Michael Follan, a ‘a clinical nurse specialist at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Glasgow, and honorary lecturer in child and adolescent mental health at the University of Glasgow’ according to his biography, gets on his high horse in ‘CiF’ over some of Dr Crippin’s articles on nurse specialists and ADHD:
The pseudonymous GP Dr Crippen suggests that diagnosis and treatment by nurse specialists – or nurse "specialists", as he calls them – is a "dumbing down" of services offered by the NHS (Should nurses be prescribing drugs for children?, 17 November).Seems like a fair comment, but it stung Michael into a recitation of his own qualifications (pointless, because he admitted he didn’t prescribe himself), and a defence of the government’s policy:
"Competition to get into medical school is intense," he says. "You need nine or 10 GCSEs, mostly A*s, and three A-grade A-levels." By contrast: "The minimum requirement for entry into a three-year nursing course is five GCSEs, and two A-levels if you want to do the nursing degree. Who do you want to diagnose and treat your child? "
The principle that underpins the extension of the prescribing role to nurses is that it gives patients quicker access to medicines, making use of experienced nurses' advanced skills.Nothing to do with cost. Nothing at all.
And if you believe that…
He finishes by asking the same question:
Having given your readers the facts, I would ask them: "Who do you want to diagnose and treat your child?"Sadly for him, he doesn’t get the answer he expected…