Don’t let this Government destroy the lives of millions

“Pain” by Racchio is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Chronic pain conditions are experienced by one in six people, poorly understood by most and attract little attention from medical researchers.   People such as myself, who live with chronic pain, will find it affects their lives physically, psychologically , socially and financially.   Our friends and families may see us as anxious, depressed, unreliable, exhausted and generally unpredicatable.  Now our Government has sent a strong message that we are also a financial burden and unworthy of support.

There are no treatments out there for chronic pain that will offer a ‘cure’ or that will alleviate all the distress the condition causes.  But there are many out there that will at least improve life.  Chronic pain is any pain condition which lasts for more than three months.

Most people will experience pain if they are injured or if they have some disease.  It is an effective warning and safety mechanism.  It prevents people with broken legs from walking at all, giving the leg time to heal.  It may get other people seeking help from a doctor as it has alerted them to the fact they are ill.  I wouldn’t want to be without my pain mechanism (although some people are).

But our pain mechanism can become faulty.  It can make you feel like a part of your body, or indeed your whole body, hurts when in fact you have no injury or illness.  There are many reasons why this can happen and many different conditions cause this to happen.  And sometimes, as in my case, nobody will know why it happens.  Traditional painkillers will have limited effect.  But there are medications that people take regularly that can reduce the problem.  But now our Government is proposing changes to NICE guidelines on the treatment of chronic pain, so those medications won’t be available.

In my case I take Gabapentin.  It is actually an anti-epileptic drug and still leaves me with constant pain.  I once tried to give this up as I felt it wasn’t doing anything.  But I ended up curled up in bed feeling like I was going to be sick because of the pain.

Pain affects my sleep drastically and makes everything more exhausting.  It means I approach every important event knowing pain may at the last minute force me to cancel.  I may take on doing some things simply because they matter to me, but knowing I will be in agony afterward.  Exhaustion is a way of life, but I am finding my own ways of managing the condition thanks to the Gabapentin, Ibuprofen, and the help I received at a pain management clinic.

The NICE guidelines are going to change so the only treatments available will be:-

  • CBT or acceptance therapy
  • Five hours of acupuncture
  • Exercise

I have been told that acupuncture offers temporary relief, so how just five hours of treatment can have any purpose at all is beyond me.  I certainly don’t need any help from a therapist in learning to accept my pain condition.  It reminds me constantly that it is there, denial just isn’t possible.  And, I don’t need a doctor or anyone else to give me a prescription to go for a walk.

Statements have been made about why this change is necessary relating largely to the fact that many pain medications can have serious long term effects and/ or can be abused.    But many medications have long term effects that are not good and many can be abused.  I struggle to understand why pain management clinics have also been stopped.  As when I attended one it gave us all clear guidance on medication choices with information on known compliactions due to long term use.  But whether these medications have side effects, problems with addiction and a potential for abuse the fact remains that may people would find life intolerable without them.

Please help us stop this cruelty that will potentially affect millions in this country.  A Government can be judged on how well it cares for the most vulnerable in society.  Please sign this petition and lets start making sure our Government begins recognising that it has a responsibility to care for the people.

Why be afraid of Integrated Care?

Looking at the GOV.UK website you may well be wondering why every region of the country has a Save the NHS Campaign?  The website talks about so many positive changes going on, more funding, better care, greater integration of health and social care and so on. So why is there are a host of books, websites, films and national campaigns dedicated to saving the NHS when everything all is so rosy in the garden of our healthcare? Continue reading “Why be afraid of Integrated Care?”

Why it is now essential that we look at the wider picture



Nobody can have escaped hearing that Boris is taking over as Prime Minister.  We know he intends to form trade deals with America, which could have disastrous consequences for our NHS.  But, we also know that he is likely to enforce greater austerity measures, throwing many more into poverty.  He is a man who made jokes about dead bodies on Libyan beaches and made that famous lie about £350m extra for the NHS on the side of a bus if we left the EU.  It is inconceivable to think that he is going to do anything other than speed up the rate at which our NHS is destroyed. Continue reading “Why it is now essential that we look at the wider picture”

One more update on how much closer we are to the complete destruction of our NHS

The destruction of our NHS is being done by stealth.  Starting in the days of Maggie when she asked the question: “What do we do about the error of 1948?” all UK Governments have been steadily marketising our NHS.    But, this Government has been pushing far harder than most to complete the final destruction of our NHS as a public service.  Through their lies, their misleading language, their introduction of more and more acronyms and the manner in which significant information is quietly slipped in through a simple sentence somewhere on a website – most of us struggle to keep up with what is happening.    At times I have posted updates on where we are up to so this post will be one more update.  But before that update I want to make a few facts clear as many people are now starting to believe the Tory lies. Continue reading “One more update on how much closer we are to the complete destruction of our NHS”

A NHS that is free at the point of need may soon be a thing of the past

Never before has our NHS been so close to its end as it is now.  We have seen services steadily rationed by NHS bosses dictating a higher threshold for who can be treated or reducing those who are eligible for treatment.  We have seen the introduction of a new policy where overseas residents from outside the EU are expected to pay up front for NHS treatement. Continue reading “A NHS that is free at the point of need may soon be a thing of the past”