Clever pupils from deprived backgrounds less likely to be judged ‘above average’, study finds – Education News – Education – The Independent

Here’s another powerful article from the Independent, highlighting that UK teachers are biased against people from deprived backgrounds. It’s a must-read. Check it out!

via Clever pupils from deprived backgrounds less likely to be judged ‘above average’, study finds – Education News – Education – The Independent.

The UK teaching profession has long been dominated by powerful unions, protecting teachers’ interests, often impeding improvement in education best practice. The hard-evidence is that UK education has slipped alarmingly in international performance leagues in recent years.

Let me ask two open question:

Surely it’s  time to introduce greater competition into the UK teaching profession and limit the restrictive practices of the trade-union?

Thoughts?

Hospitals could save £3bn by not paying too much for medical equipment and supplies | Daily Mail Online

This short article from the MailOnline is a must-read, citing latest research. Check it out!

via Hospitals could save £3bn by not paying too much for medical equipment and supplies | Daily Mail Online.

It’s no surprise that there are eye-watering savings available from both improving procurement and staff rotoring practices in the NHS. It’s the same old debate, whether NHS insiders, like doctors and nurses know best, or professionals from outside the NHS. Intuitively, I favor outsiders for non-technical management, i.e. let the professionals stick to medicine.

I have a friend who is a retired senior administrator from the NHS. Listening to him, his views are quite radical, including introducing elements of Obamacare in the UK. He was man and boy in the NHS.

I also knew quite well a very senior NHS procurement professional. His background was a career in consulting. I met him first in a major UK government department – his proposed economies and efficiencies built in to the business case failed to materialize.

My personal take is that the biggest problems with reform in the NHS are:

  • Weak procurement practices
  • Ineffective staff management, especially concerning rostering
  • Excessive bureaucracy
  • Political meddling
  • Absence of strategy
  • Powerful stakeholders, like doctors and nurses, protecting their own interests
  • Failure to address preventative factors, like obesity and drug and drink abuse

Finally, let me share that in Cyprus, when hospitals started charging small fees for visits to doctors and specialists, waiting times were slashed. Too many patients in public healthcare are time-wasters.

Like my good friend, the retired NHS administrator, I too think that the answer to the UK’s healthcare challenge is a universal basic healthcare policy (modeled on the World’s best practice).

Thoughts?

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