30 April 2007

Doctors don't necessarily have their patients interests at heart.

Doctors cheered David Cameron the other day. Doctors of course, also largely opposed the setting up of the NHS -
so don't think they are some bellweather of public opinion or even opinion within the NHS.

13 comments:

  1. Doctors' adherence to the Hippocratic oath is rather more important than their politics. To suggest that doctors' support for Cameron means that they do not have their patients' interests at heart is somewhat disingenuous. A strawman, even.

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  2. "45. 1.8m low paid workers’ tax bills halved with a 10p starting rate."

    45a. 1.8m low paid workers' tax bills doubled with the abolition of the 10p starting rate.

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  3. Longrider: I was just pointing out that if we had followed doctors opinions we never would have got an NHS.

    Anon: It is a list from 2006, so out of 378 or so pluses, there is one minus. I would agree with you that the 10p rate should not have been abolished.

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  4. I was just pointing out that if we had followed doctors opinions we never would have got an NHS.

    So? That doesn't mean that they don't have their patients' interests at heart, merely that they disagree with you over their preferred healthcare model.

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  5. Longrider: You must have been a very curious Labour supporter if you don't believe the NHS is a good thing. Go and live in the US where they scream civil liberties at the drop of a hat (or the licencing of a gun)- you will find that freedom depends on how much money you have, not real freedom which depends on having a state that provides reasonable healthcare, education etc. for ALL its citizens.

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  6. You must have been a very curious Labour supporter if you don't believe the NHS is a good thing.

    Please point me to where I said this.

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  7. longrider: You claim that doctors can still have their patients interests at heart but oppose the NHS and prefer the system that was happening in the 1930s. If you think the healthcare system of the 1930s could possibly be in the interests of patients then you were, like I said, a very curious Labour supporter indeed.

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  8. Subtlety is not your strong point, is it? Not that I was being particularly subtle here.

    There are plenty of healthcare systems in the world that do not follow the NHS model - do those doctors not have their patients' interests at heart? Indeed, those doctors in this country who oppose the NHS model doubtless do so because they have their patients' interests at heart. That is, they support a model that they believe is in the best interests of their patients' welfare.

    However, the benefits or otherwise of the NHS was not the point I was making; it was the strawman you used as the basis for your post. Doctors who support Cameron do not necessarily oppose the NHS and those who do cannot be presumed not to have their patients' interests at heart. There is no correlation.

    That was my point.

    For the record, I do support the NHS model, although I suspect the French version is likely to be the most pragmatic outcome in the long term.

    As I said, subtlety; I at least can see merit in someone's argument even if I do not agree with it. What irritates is blind assertion that is not backed up by facts and making baseless correlations where none exist merely to score cheap political points.

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  9. My point was that most doctors in the 1930's opposed ANY public funding for healthcare - clearly a nice bunch of chaps who very clearly didn't have their patients best interests at heart. And I suspect a serious number of the current crop who support the Tories are thinking more of cutting their tax bill on their 100k earnings than of patient care!

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  10. And I suspect a serious number of the current crop who support the Tories are thinking more of cutting their tax bill on their 100k earnings than of patient care!

    Evidence?

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  11. The more you earn the more likely you are to be a Tory. Doctors are in the top 1% of earners which is heavily populated by short-termist selfish Tories, doctors are not immune to this, sadly.

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  12. That's an assumption, not fact. This is why I am taking issue with you. The only fact you have here is that some doctors cheered David Cameron. Everything else is mere assumption based upon your own prejudices about the wealthy (there are plenty of wealthy Labour supporters, mind).

    Your reasoning, pared down, goes like this:

    Some doctors cheer Cameron (demonstrable fact), ergo, doctors are Tories (assumption), ergo doctors today oppose the NHS because fifty years ago doctors opposed its setting up. That argument just doesn't hold water; it's a classic strawman.

    As I pointed out, you have no evidence to back up this leap of faith.

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  13. Longrider: "doctors are Tories (assumption)"

    The latest opinion poll I read in the Telegraph suggests just 7% of doctors support Labour and 43% Tory (even in 1997 more doctors supported the Tories than Labour)- so yes a disproportionate number are Tories.

    Of course I am making sweeping statements here and I think most people would recognise that - for simplicities sake the article would not read so well if I put a few doctors etc. Not ALL doctors are Tories but a lot are for the reasons I suggested.

    My main point is that doctors are not representative of the general population or even of NHS staff because of their wealthy privileged position skewing their political opinions.

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