It's very easy to find something worthwhile to write about today. After all, what could be more important and fascinating then learning a bit about what our illustrious Prime Minister had to say last week at Kings College, London and the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing?
He started his speech with a good old dose of flattery, 'Almost 150 years old, yours is one of the oldest colleges of nursing and midwifery in Britain with a modern reputation for outstanding professionalism, excellence in research and world leadership in the training of nurses – and there is nowhere more appropriate for me to talk about how we can work together to renew Britain’s NHS for the future'.
Mr Brown is clearly in charge now and wants us all to believe there will be renewed Government efforts to improve public health and healthcare. He wishes to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the NHS and is happy to pay testimony to the extraordinary work done by nurses, doctors and all other staff, with a gentle reminder that £100bn is now the cost of the NHS.
So, dear nurses the Gordon Brown message is for you to feel confidence in your professional lives and that, together in happy partnership, more improvements are on the way.
He wishes to see:
better access to health screening and immunisation and vaccination programmes;
more primary care, with a variety of providers and better access during unsocial hours;
decisive action taken when services fail to be the required standard;
the development of an NHS constitution which makes explicit our rights and responsibilities in healthcare;
and more help for families to live healthier lives.
Lots more change lies ahead – even if only to keep pace with the phenomenal developments in technologies and drug therapies. The UK must support the work of scientists which continues to help eradicate disease and human misery.
But how could Prime Minister Brown return to number 10 without highlighting the health curse of obesity? Well, he did talk about the topic and wishes to make certain that current trends are to be stopped – and stopped right now.
If certain behaviours persist by 2050, 60% of the population will be obese with all the accompanying conditions, such as diabetes and hypertension.
More fruit and vegetables must be consumed and somehow huge reductions in the eating of fats and sugars needs to be achieved.
The NHS is to achieve the double P – more prevention and more personalised care. Men over the age of 65 years are to be offered an ultrasound test to detect early abdominal aortic aneurysm and in the future health checks will be available for heart disease, strokes, diabetes and kidney disease.
So, welcome to the land of prevention, which is one I wish to enter just as long as, when I'm ill, there are kind and competent people close to me to provide the care I need in a place where I would like to be cared for.