On our trip on Wednesday we were shown this video as an illustration of what it has been like working for their PCT over the last 6 months, and boy does it ring true!!
7 weeks into my new job, I am able to look back on the whole Commissioning a Patient led NHS / PCT reorganisation process with more clarity. No one expected that it would be easy to bring together a diverse group of PCTs into just 2 (though it feels like one as there is one management structure), but then again no one expected it would be quite like it was. Basic change management theory tells you that communication is the key to such a process, and that is just the area where we were let down and to a certain extent still are. The other problem I would suggest is that the top management team, once it was formed, failed to have any kind of vision about what the new organisation would be, save one that saved as much money as possible, and in addition failed to share any kind of vision that they might have had. Even the most committed employees cannot ‘carry on regardless’ as our outgoing chief executive once advised, if they don’t know what the purpose is. Productivity (if patient care and health care management can be measured in that way) must have fallen to the lowest possible point and is only just beginning to recover. Clarity of purpose is just emerging and people are beginning to refocus on what needs to be done, and at long last some services can recruit much needed clinical staff. People have realised that the money we spend is public money, they have realised that inefficiency and ineffectiveness cannot be tolerated, but of course waste still goes on and no doubt it will continue for some time. I am sadly not convinced that all the best people got all the best jobs, but we can only hope that at some time in the future good sense will prevail and greater efficiency will follow, but then I have found some rose coloured spectacles with my new job!