Thursday, March 8, 2012

Please....let us fly

Glasgow...have forgotten how many times one has visited this city and all it has borne has been happy memories. Another conference of Diabetes UK, under new leadership, new energy, new passion..the "year of the foot"....buzz of people dedicated to making things better. For me, this has always been a venue to catch up with similar minded folks, learn from other areas, mistakes, novelties...anything to take back to one's working place to try and see whether an existing system can be made better.

But somehow there's just something missing...somewhere you get the feeling that a trick has been missed...where are the GP commissioners, where are the Trust executives, where are the folks who hold the purse strings, make the decisions? Where are the innovative GPs who stand up and say how they want to work with specialists and have commissioned services to improve diabetes care? unfortunately not much of that....but that's what we need...there wasn't any lack of folks who believe things need to be better...it feels like practicing to the preached. It's the same old faces, the same guard, looking tired, weary...but still there..still telling us all how to do.
The past is still insisting that they know the road to the future...while the present look on...hopping from one room to another, parched souls looking for that elixir which will breathe life into their ailing diabetes service.
Where are the Pratik Choudhurys, the Niru Goenkas, the Nic Olivers, the Pete Careys...the ones who are certainly to be the leading lights and buzz with ideas, innovations and understand the importance of working with primary care..why aren't they headlining these events...no..we stick to the age old belief...the wizened ones know best, the grey heads with their sagacious knowledge will lead the way, somehow they will be the Gandalfs showing us poor Frodos how to avoid the eye of Sauron.

But alas, such is not the case...somehow there continues to be the unbridled desire for the old guard to stay on, the desire to pat the young ones on their head and shake their heads in unison to say " not yet, little un, not yet". Well, I say enough!!...experience has it's role but needs to be mixed with the passion and energy of youth..the ones who are chomping at the bit to do something...different. Let the energy of youth come to the fore, let the ones who have trained with GPs, who understand what their primary care colleagues do come out...not the ones who still feel primary care are second class citizens, view managers with suspicion and commissioners with disdain.

Every sphere of life has now embraced the word "change"..the need to inject passion, drive and energy..be it politics, sports or movies. Experience certainly has it's role, it is to advise...certainly not to drive. Let the young brigade loose, let them pave their own path, the ones who don't dwell on experience to lament about the good old times, but take the leap in the knowledge that something better can be done..or at least be happy in the knowledge that they have been bold enough to try something new, something fresh..unrestricted by the fears of failure. This is not about organisations, this is not about holding on to have influence....this is about making diabetes care better for patients.

The young are ready, believe us, the wings are sturdy....please...let us fly.

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