“In life as in nature, what’s good for the bee, is good for the hive”

Fill Yer BOOTS on the NHS – Guilty As (Over) Charged

Feb 7, 2018

Jumping jack flash, hold the front page: shlock horror ran The Times headlines of 2nd Feb: Times INVESTIGATION (in capitals so we know we should pay attention).  The lead story confirmed they’ve rifled through digital waste bins and old paper invoices to get evidence of the NHS playing fast (and especially loose) with ‘our’ cash.  It seems they have been coughing up £1,500 for a £2 pot of moisturiser.  Quite, I nearly coughed and choked on that, too.  But for context, with a £145 billion NHS budget, blowing a measly fifteen hundred quid seems barely a pimple on the NHS’s backside.  More than a healthy tip too, that £1,498 mark up on a £2 item – black Cabbies and Uberistas eat your hearts out.  Presumably, ‘said’ moisturiser was accompanied by an eight grand jar of smelling salts for Matron.  Maybe we are into peak ‘buy one get one free’ season – we need to know, and pretty soon.

Morgan, Stanley?  Well, “no other car would do”.

The Journo who penned the article really had me: leaned in, turned on, and transfixed to his words.  He’s clearly a splendid Wordsmith and Writerist, is Paul Morgan-Bentley.  Any fella named after two of Britain’s finest examples of hand crafted, top pimped metal – well, he would be worth reading, wouldn’t he?  At least the article finally gave me a clue as to what I was about to uncover, all in depth and at source – it being listed under the ‘Health’ and ‘NHS’ categories rather than under ‘expensive champagne’ and ‘corked’.  Those titles often being interchangeable.

Coconut Water(gate)

So, Tricky Dicky, please help me lift the lid on all of this, if you would.  The next over charged item, is none other than that nectar of the Gods, likely: virgin, ‘luxurious’ oil of coconut.  This glassed up gem, has been changing hands for just 650 of those splendidly quaint British pounds.  For ‘tis how this palm was greased – “but at least you got a free lid, Dicky”.  There it was, front of page and front of centre: CoconutGate ‘jar photo’ in all its two tone glory.  But actually, we didn’t need a photo, coconuts are pretty easy for us to picture – especially those of us who still have a brown and white telly.

Oil of O.K.

It seems Boots (allegedly!) or their associates, filled their not so much boots, as their shiny, upsold, calf length Louboutin’s – replacing those dusty (but trusty) old ‘boots’.   If such prices are what High Street Chemists currently charge, then likely they’re playing Monopoly – but now their High Street is Park Lane and Mayfair all rolled into one.  Meanwhile, someone’s Grannie is lying on a trolley waiting for a new hip, with scarcely a bottle (or jéroboam) of Chateau Laffite ‘69 anywhere to be found, to celebrate.  Especially, not amongst Nurse Nellie, on her latest 12 hour shift – labouring under the latest management ‘power saving’ lights wheeze, one clearly set to: extra dim.

Extra Special Bashing

‘Specials’ are those medical items that are ordered at short notice, requiring specialist attention and care, to ensure that their bespoke nature doesn’t compromise their safety nor their quality.  In fact, just like that personally bespoked Morgan, or Bentley car – you should expect to pay extra for that panel crafted, hand bashed, masterpiece.   But, rogue Pharmacists and Suppliers beware, as, from April 2018 there will be increased regulation and greater scrutiny to identify any wrong ‘uns.  Especially those running a couple of latest spec’ Lear Jets on the proceeds from a ‘lock up’ shop (open three days a month, between 12 noon and 3pm) but closed on Saturdays.  All this goes to show that as with anything in life, we should always read the small print.  A simple solution to all this?  Well, one, quite simply that would require all NHS suppliers to highlight their terms in bold and red, stating clearly: this product may contain buts.