Paying for health care

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  • Having access to decent medical care should not be reliant on whether or not you are in employment. What's next? You need to earn 'x' amount before we can treat you? Ridiculous.
    The NHS was implemented with the best of intentions, and no, it's not a God given right, but it certainly is the right of any British citizen while it is active. I couldn't afford private medical care, so by your standards, what would you recommend we do? Simply go without? Or be quiet and eat my soup? ;) Every single time a new government is established, we are promised a better quality service from the NHS. It never gets any better.

    Were this a private institution, we'd leave and find another company (more suited to our requirements), one that met our very basic needs. But we'd also stop paying them when we left; an option we don't have with the NHS.
    There is nothing wrong with expecting better standards of care from a government that promises just that.

  • I absolutely do not want to see it means tested in any way at all. The free access is the most important part of it, in my opinion. I've seen so many US correspondents online wondering wehther they really need to see a doctor because they can'taford the cost and I would hate to see anyone here in that situation. It's one of the things that I willingly pay my taxes for.

  • The only reason the NHS has gone downhill is because the Government won't give it the money it needs to work efficiently.
    I am VERY uncomfortable with treating healthcare as a busines commodity.
    I think it IS very wrong to sell healthcare.
    No one should have to pay to be healthy, especially since it's the big corporations, to an extent, making our health more poor, by petrol fumes, pollution, f**king up the food chain, GM etc etc.

    Instead of bailing out the greedy bankers the money should have gone to the NHS, chance!

    Money---------------------Never TheTwain should meet--------------------> Healthcare

    Under ANY circumstances.

  • So sorry to hear this. :(
    If the NHS got the funding it needed, things like this would have been avoided.
    I wonder if the decision to train younger nurses in Uni and not ward was another cost-cutting excercise?

  • I've had good and bad experiences with the NHS. When I was in hospital last year the nurses were incredible (apart from one) but the consultants were pretty horrible, several reduced me to tears. I appreciate the medical care but what I have a problem is the attitude of a lot the staff. You go to hospital because you're ill/in pain, it's not too much to ask for people to be nice to you and try to help.

    I've also been to private hospital a few times and it was fantastic. I went private so I wouldn't have to wait 18 months with the NHS. Not only was it quicker but both the doctors and nurses were so great, probably because I was a paying customer and I could choose to go elsewhere if I didn't liike the service.

    Yes, manners don't cos anything, and I can see why you are upset with the attitude of the NHS staff.

    A two teir health system, however (cheap-but-nasty NHS versus expensive but comfy Private) smacks of class distinction. Those with the money get treated better cos they can pay for it.
    I am saying that the NHS shoud be funded enough to be of good enough quality to be comfy and soothing to each and every one of us.
    It's not a case that the government can't fund it more, it's more a case of it won't, because the government are too busy spending on greedy bankers, and weapons.

  • No dispute with your point - but then why are we one of the only places providing such as service? Why doesn't America or Germany or Thailand provide it?

    Countries that don't have an nhs see healthcare as a business commodity.
    The rich get well, the poor get sicker and die sooner.

  • But why on Earth is a woman in that situation getting pregnant in the first place? Surely she should better her life before she considers having a family?

    I'm all for an open borders policy, and I love the way this country is far more charitable and tolerant than many, but there is a big difference between needs and wants.

    Maybe the woman was forced to have sex against her will, if the homeland is war torn etc

  • I think I have made my thoughts known before. As an American, I have seen first-hand the effect of "paying for health care." Those who can pay get the best care, those who can't often get nothing at all. But I also agree that there is a definite problem within the NHS because of the targets and management-heavy hierarchy. Nos trained to be a nurse, and he felt that the "classroom" aspect was fine but that hands-on training should be the bigger part of qualifying. Like most of you, Nos found that the senior and older nurses knew their stuff, while the younger nurses were more concerned with working their way up the system so they could have all the titles and higher salaries. Working in medicine should be a calling, not a job option that one chooses casually.

    Personally, I have never had a problem with the NHS that was serious enough for me to be bothered by it. What I do find is a waste of time and resources is "vanity" surgeries and surgeries that are completely and entirely without justification and should be paid for (for instance, you pay for a nose job but you don't have to pay for skin grafts following a serious burn). I think those should be paid for by the patient as there is no life or death situation.

    I am more in contact with the NHS now than I ever have been because of my arthritis. So far, so good.

    The american way of healthcare is appauling. Those without money are closer to death. Americans basically pay to survive.
    As for the excessive amounts of BigWigs in the NHS, perhaps, the NHS is stealthily morphing into a business right before our very eyes, unbeknownst to us, hence the amount of well paid chiefs, not on the frontline.

    I started nurse training in 1986, but never completed my training. My seniors felt that I was not coping. Back then, cleanliness was all important, and all of the menial tasks got done (bedpans, observations, washes, etc)
    We had plenty training on the wards. I found theory easy, but ward work too difficult.
    Maybe some of the newer classroom trained nurses are not suitable for the wards, as nursing IS a calling.
    Maybe, like me, some of these newer nurses are not suitable for ward work.

    The one and only reason I think private hospitals should exist is for vanity surgery (except for psychologicaly injurious disfigurement, boob jobs to prevent backache, etc)

    May your experience with the NHS be a good one.

  • Ultimately, I believe that, worldwide, excellent quality healthcare should be free to all.
    I know there are some poor countries who cannot afford this, but what with globalization, surely the world should ideally act as one to produce quality healthcare for every earth citizen.

    The poor countries were only made poor when their natural resources were pillaged by Europeans.
    Now it should be time for payback.

    But...this will never happen, because our Government care more about wasting money on warfare and bankers, etc, and at the top of the pyramid, the government and big corporations are as one.

    Sorry for the slew of posts, I find it easier to do it that way.
    Hopefully all of them have different interesting points to raise about the NHS.

    Healthcare IS a God given right, it has to be, because, afterall, healing does come from Spirit.

  • I am a final year student Nurse (off due to illness at present) and during my 2.75 years of training so far I have worked at 2 different hospitals within an NHS trust and had placements on many different wards and also in the community. I personally am not sure, as to whether I believe in the current NHS we have now, and sometimes I actually do think that other forms of health care would provide a lot better quality of patient care and be run more efficient, than what we currently have.

    During my time on the wards, the amount of bureaucracy and paperwork I saw going on was just unbelievable, everything that is done no matter what there is paperwork for it. Health professionals that work on the wards have so much paperwork to do that it eats your time up, whatever you do with patients has to be recorded, and there are forms for everything. I spent many hours sitting doing documentation whilst at the same time trying to rush around and get everything else done in time, it can be very overwhelming. Then there is the whole target culture, which I think is more detrimental to patients than a good thing. It’s not just about treating patients within a certain time limit; you have to make sure you provide a good quality of care for your patients as well. I do not see how good quality care can be provided when the staff are rushed off their feet trying to meet targets. If you want good quality care then make sure wards are fully staffed and make sure there are plenty of workplace facilities available to help staff with the stress of the job which in turn might help decrease the high staff turnover rate, because staff come and go all the time.

    There was mention of nurse training on a few of the posts above. I would from my own opinion say that nursing training these days has become to academic and not enough hands on. During the time at university, we were constantly writing assignments and learning about policies and legislation, but it seemed me, we were not really getting enough practice in the hands on skills labs, (in my opinion anyway). When you go into placement you are assigned a mentor/mentors, but the problem is that because most wards are extremely busy and sometimes understaffed, the mentor/mentors you are assigned sometimes have hardly any time to work with you. How can you learn in that sort of environment? During my training I have seen nurses really stressed and miserable because of the work load and the pressure; I have overheard conversations between nurses saying how much they would like better jobs elsewhere or maybe even leave the profession. One nurse, who was teaching me on a placement, packed his bags and went to Australia for better prospects. In a lot of places the morale just seems really low and sometimes patients pick up on it, which just isn’t good at all.

    I believe in healthcare for all, but the way in which it is delivered needs changing, and there are so many different opinions on how to do that. I think that the philosophy of patient care needs to change as it seems to be more of a, “Deal with people once they’re in hospital” at the moment sort of thing. If you look at other health systems like the French for instance, for years and years they put a lot of investment into health promotion to keep people out of hospital in the first place, and it seems to work. Obviously it is structured different and is not fully free, but the health promotion aspect is important. We do not seem to be promoting health in this country as much as we could, I think. With a population of 70 million, strategies for keeping people healthy and out of hospital should be high on the priority list.

    I think that the NHS is too big and needs to be broken apart to run more efficiently, I also think more autonomy for the service is needed. There is too much political interference going on, whatever one government does, the next government will just come along and take it away. The compensation system needs overhauling as well, every year the service is spending hundreds of millions paying lawyers and compensation fees. Obviously some cases are genuine, but how many are just from people just looking to make easy money. You’ve got to wonder how many of these cases are being settled out of court just to save money, because if it is a large majority then this alone will contribute to a big compensation culture that will drain the service even more.

    As for private care, I think it should be an option for everyone if they have the opportunity to have it, what annoys me is how the government seem to be in favour of privatising the NHS and will not admit it. Instead they seem to be taking it nice and slowly, step by step, hoping we will not notice. Even though I think the private sector could provide a better quality of care, I do not agree with them competing directly with the NHS as the NHS is a public service, it is not a business and should not be treated that way. Another thing that bothers me is the fact that a lot of NHS hospitals have private wards within them, which to me is disgusting. To me public healthcare facilities and private healthcare facilities should be separate.

    Under the proposals the government want to put into place, everyone will basically become a money pot where the NHS and private firms will compete for us to come to them for services. As i currently understand (correct me if i am wrong), trusts can refer patients to private services and the NHS will pay, a lot of overstretched trusts have been doing it to ease waiting lists (Something along those lines anyway). The government are working to bring in more private sector firms to deal with health care, and this does not just apply to hospitals, it also applies to community care.

    Let’s face it, if you have a choice between an NHS hospital and a private hospital where you get your own room, less noise, and maybe newer stuff, which service are you most likely to pick. Most people will go for the private service which means the private sector will get all the money, if they are getting all the money, then why keep NHS hospitals open. If you are a government you are going to start closing hospitals, maybe selling them and just leaving the job of healthcare to the private sector, and just paying them tax payers money.

    That’s my two cents worth anyway.

  • An interesting read.

    I think that there should be no need for private healthcare.
    I cannot help but question the morality of someone who wants to make healthcare a saleable item, when it's a basic human right.

  • An interesting read.

    I think that there should be no need for private healthcare.
    I cannot help but question the morality of someone who wants to make healthcare a saleable item, when it's a basic human right.

    But it takes away peoples choice if there is only one form of healthcare, could the NHS really provide for everyones health needs if we had no private system. I do not like the private system personally, but it does seem to provide a better quality of care, one reason for that is because the private sector operates itself more efficently and does not have huge management and bureaucratic structures. :)

  • But it takes away peoples choice if there is only one form of healthcare, could the NHS really provide for everyones health needs if we had no private system. I do not like the private system personally, but it does seem to provide a better quality of care, one reason for that is because the private sector operates itself more efficently and does not have huge management and bureaucratic structures. :)

    I've heard people say that while the facilities in private hospitals are definitely much better than some NHS hospitals the actual treatments and level of care can often be just the same or not as good when it comes to it. i work for NHS Scotland and there are few nurses who are no use but by far the majority of them that I work with do their job properly.