Monday, February 01, 2010

Cameron’s Election Liability – Kent Conservatives Health issues and the £600 phone calls

Crikey, you’d think David Cameron has all the advantages facing up to the election with a discredited Gordon Brown in government but you just wonder what might happen to David Cameron’s chances, if the press got there teeth in to Kent Conservatives bloated “Health Watch” project.

It seems to me that Conservatives in Kent just can’t add up, a bit like our incumbent Prime Minister, who’s continuing to spend, when the countries on the verge of Bankruptcy.

Here in Kent, the county council led by the Conservatives who have a history of big money, er incidents like Icelandic Banking, commissioning art galleries in the North Sea, Kent TV, non-existent flights to America and now Kent Health Watch costing £300,000 in a year for no apparent benefit.Kent Wealth watch

Just ask Paul Carter how much does it cost to answer a phone? Well if its for KCC’s pointless Health Watch Advice line the cost of dealing with each call is an astonishing £600 pounds and what do they do precisely, well it seems they jot down your details and pass them on to the NHS and er themselves.

You might just think this is just an aberration on the part of Kent’s “County Tories” but no, it seems according too the influential “Local Government Chronicle”* that David Cameron is going to use this as a model, to set a new tier of national bureaucracy to rule over that other crazy expensive bureaucratic nightmare the NHS.

Its easy to blame weak and feeble politicians for wasting huge amounts of money but at the end of the day many, like I guess our Kent Tories, are bereft of ideas, and take the advice from advisors or “officers” who earn their money often from inventing pointless tasks for themselves and public sector colleagues.

What’s the solution, this country has an unsustainable raft of public sector workers, and its time politicians like Paul Carter (KCC Leader) and David Cameron, started to distinguish between those we need like refuse collectors, medics, police, frontline staff and bloated overpaid council bosses who seem obsessed with finding new ways to spend money. How about politicians say to their Chief Execs cut costs by say 10% for the next five years or find a new job.

PS Just for a laugh I thought I’d ask how KCC spends £300,000 on dealing with 500 odd calls to their Health Line, I’ll update you if KCC press office ever get back to me.howmuch

Suggested reading from Kent on Sundays report which I missed back in December which includes some fine quotes from Cllr. Trudy Dean Leader of the Liberal Democratic group on Kent County Council.

*(a magazine I think, for local government bods seeking either new jobs or some BS phrase or idea to justify their current job)


  1. Kent Healthwatch was set up at the time that the government were getting Kent LINk off the ground.
    Most Kent residents wont have heard of either service.
    I suspect that KCC doesn't promote Kent LINk.

    The Kent LINk is an independent network of local people and community groups working together to influence and improve Kent's health and social care services.

    So whats the point of KCC spending even more cash on their scheme that also has the same aim?

    Not all of the calls to Kent HealthWatch where for advice. Some where just complementing the service. Who could these had been from?

    KCC boast that the service is open on Xmas day. If you have a medical emergency on Xmas day I can tell those at KCC that you can ring 999, your local on-call doctor, NHS Direct or even visit A&E.

    At least next year the cost will be down to £200,000.

  2. Kent LINk website is