Summary of Key Results
No of responses: 215
94% do not support the Health and Social Care Bill in its current form.
93% believe the Society should adopt an official stance on the Health and Social Care Bill, of these;
* 3% believe our official stance should be to support the bill in its current form.
* 49% believe our official stance should be to work with the government and the Royal College of Physicians to secure improvements to the legislation.
* 48% believe our official stance should be to issue an official statement indicating that the bill should be withdrawn.
Full Results of Society for Acute Medicine Member Survey
The Health and Social Care Bill has attracted considerable debate over recent weeks. A number of healthcare organisations have adopted a formal position in relation to this issue. There have been calls from the Royal College of General Practitioners, British Medical Association, Royal College of Nursing and many other groups for the Bill to be withdrawn. The aims of this survey was to establish whether members of the Society for Acute Medicine would like the Society to adopt a formal position in relation to this issue and, if so, to guide what form that position should take.
The survey was circulated to all 1032 members of the Society for Acute Medicine by email on 6th February, via a link to Surveymonkey. Further reminders were sent on 13th and 17th February. The survey questions are listed in the results section. In addition respondents were asked to identify their job title and in which part of the UK they worked. Free text comments regarding suggested improvements to the legislation were also invited. All responses were anonymous.
215 responses had been received by 7pm on 19th February.
182 respondents indicated that they worked in England; 136 (63%) were consultants or career grade doctors and 68 (32%) were doctors in training; the majority of the remaining 5% were nurses.
The survey questions and responses were as follows:
- 1. Do you support the Health and Social Care Bill in its current form?
Yes: 13 (6%)
No: 202 (94%)
- 2. Do you believe that the Society for Acute Medicine should adopt a formal position in relation to the Bill?
Yes: 199 (92.6%)
No: 16 (7.4%)
- 3. If yes, which of the following approaches would you be most likely to support?
(total 207 responses)
- To support the Bill in its current form? 6 responses (3%)
- To work with the Government and Royal College of Physicians of London to secure improvements to the legislation? 101 responses (49%)
- To issue a statement indicating that the Bill should be withdrawn? 100 responses (48%)
Although only 20% of the membership had responded to the survey at the time of writing, the results indicate that Acute Physicians have significant concerns regarding the Health and Social Care Bill in its current form. Only a very small minority of respondents indicated that they supported the current proposed legislation and only 3% would wish SAM to take this approach. The remainder were equally split between those who would like the Bill to be withdrawn completely and those would like improvements to the legislation.
The free text comments indicated that such improvements would need to be substantial to satisfy many of the respondents’ concerns. There was a strong collective view that major structural reorganisation of the Health Service was inappropriate during this time of financial pressure. Significant concerns were also expressed regarding the dangers of fragmentation of acute care pathways as a result of greater competition between providers; acute physicians clearly recognise the importance of greater integration between services to ensure safe and effective care of acutely unwell patients.
SAM President 19/02/12