23.10.06

Imitation; Flattery

Whenever I read the words of an American who needs medical treatment (perhaps even life-saving medical treatment) but has to pay for it, and is struggling to afford the cost (if they can afford it at all) it makes me so happy that the two main parties in the UK (the right-of-centre one and the far-right one) are doing all they can to change our out-dated public healthcare system to a more advanced, free-market model. That's what I call progress!

4 comments:

zhoen said...

Yeah, but I read about the many, many complaints about the NHS, from BBC and
http://randomreality.blogware.com/blog
and I gotta think, it's a toss up. But then, I am benefitting from the nursing shortage here.

Pacian said...

Substandard care for all is better than no care at all for some. This isn't about American healthcare in general versus UK healthcare, but who better serves the needs of the unfortunate.

Unfortunate not just meaning poor people, but middle class people who find out that treatment for their illness isn't covered by their health insurance.

Pacian said...

Ah, here's the guy I was thinking of, as just one example. (He's dead now, in case that isn't clear from this archive of his site.)

In any case, the question is, how do we improve the NHS. Our rulers believe that moving towards an American model is the answer.

For example, Margaret Thatcher replaced hospital cleaners with private contractors. These contractors negotiated tough contracts (tough for the NHS, easy for them, that is), and now obey them to the letter, but no further. They may not be cleaning the hospitals enough, they may even be killing people, but they have to turn a big profit don't they? We couldn't really expect them to do more than is in the contract? Lives aren't as great as money, surely?

If I ever end up in hospital, they can kill me through incompetence, exhaustion, stupidity or misunderstanding. But if they kill me to save money they can fucking expect a haunting.

Emily said...

I think the NHS is fantastic, lots of people complain but they would be in even more of a strop if it wasn't there. I think the way forward is more nurses, as at the end of the day they do a large amount of the work and less managers as they're just concerned with paper shuffling and statistics and I doubt they have any medical experience or knowledge of what really happens. Target waiting list times are a great idea, but I have a funny feeling there is a lot of 'manipulation' of resources, staff and more worryingly patients in order to stand a chance at achieving them. I think the NHS is forced to spend its money in all the wrong places. Also, we only hear about all the bad experiences and things that happen. Everyone makes mistakes and unfortunately luck plays a part.people very easily (and I wonder how much they are encouraged to)forget about all the great things that happen. Limbs, organs, senses and lives that are saved every single day of the year. Surely just knowing that if something drastic did happen there are people available to assist you any time of day, and any day of the year with very minimal or even no paperwork or hassle is a great comfort. I know it is to me. The NHS does fantastic things and not always in the best conditions or circumstances. It is purely the hard work, caring nature and helpfulness of the front line staff that make it so fantastic.