Welcome to the summer edition of Management in Practice, and what a start to the summer we have had: wall-to-wall sunshine over four bank holidays, which is virtually unheard of! This was topped only by a magnificent display of Britishness during the wonderful Royal Wedding Event – truly a magnificent few days. There has been a real feel-good factor of late.
Have you noticed, though, that things have gone a little quiet on the political front where the NHS is concerned? A pause in the passages of the Health and Social Care Bill in England, a reassessment of the fast pace of change, a time for consultation… it all suggests a very nice tactical detour. Surely this has nothing to do with the local elections that have just taken place?
Is Andrew Lansley hoping the feel-good factor will prompt amnesia and that we will all forget about the rollercoaster ride of the last few months? I really don’t think so, nor do I think the delays will make a huge amount of difference to the reforms. Of course, heed will have to be paid to the results of the consultations, but inevitably most of the planned changes will go ahead. Many primary care trusts (PCTs) are facing their demise, consortia are running in shadow (interpret that how you like) and many PCT staff have already lost their jobs. Are we not already too far down the road for major readjustment?
Perhaps I am being too cynical, and this is one of the reasons why this will be my final comment for Management in Practice. After six years working with the team, I feel a fresh view is required. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with the MiP team on a publication that I believe is the best available for practice managers and the broader management team.
MiP itself continues apace, of course, with conference season just around the corner. Kicking off is the Manchester Event on 14 June, followed by London on 31 August and Birmingham on 4 October 2011. MiP conferences are renowned for their variety of speakers and presentations, and entry is free to all venues.
In addition, practice managers are invited to submit entries for the new General Practice Awards celebrating success in primary care. A lavish ceremony will take place in London in November for those submitting entries to the awards, which include a wealth of categories, including Practice Manager of the Year and General Practice of the Year. There will be something for everyone, so go ahead, celebrate and shout about your success. In this time of upheaval we really need to be more vocal about the fantastic work that we do in primary care. If we don’t market ourselves, no one else will.
To conclude my final comment, I would like to thank everyone at MiP for their support, particularly Stuart Gidden, the editor, who is fantastic at putting my Black Country garb into English, and of course I wish the team every success for the future.