Guess How Much My 3 Weeks In Hospital Cost?
I had 4 operations on the NHS during my cancer treatment and overall they were excellent. The only issue I had was contracting a nasty infection in hospital (which appears to happen a lot recently, you're more likely to become more ill through contracting something else whilst in there).
I didn't pay for any of it directly, however I have contributed to NI for all of my adult life (and still am)
A couple of things that I would point out:
People over 60 do not have to pay prescription charges.
Each region has what is called a Primary Care Trust that is made up of people who decide what treatments will or will not be available in their area. This contributes to the post-code problem. For example if you live in the South West of England just hope you never suffer from C.F.S. or similar. (Among other ailments)
About NI payments - these are deducted at 11% on earnings between £89 and £595 per week, and at 1% on earnings over £595 per week.
NI payments also go towards paying for state pensions and unemployment benefits etc., not just for the NHS.
No, most employers do not offer private health insurance. It is a "perk" with some jobs, and it is taxed.
That doesn't make a lot of sense. But then we tax savings and that makes even less sense.
Waiting list times are a problem, and not easily resolved, because doubling the NHS budget would not spontaneously produce qualified nurses, surgeons, physiotherapists and so on. If you are fortunate enough to have private health insurance, or you can pay, you can skip the queue by going private - and usually see the same consultant you would have 12 months later on the NHS. Which does raise the issue of whether private health care is relieving an overstretched NHS, or just worsening care for those who can't pay.
Yeah I can see what you're talking about. I'm wondering if some sort of meeting of the minds between the two systems (UK and U.S.) might be more efficient while providing coverage for everyone. I would favor seeing what you describe implemented in this country for those without current coverage. It seems to work well enough here for those with insurance, but we seem to run into trouble for those without.
I'd also like to see the pharmaceutical companies brought under control here. It's outrageous they charge us two or three times what Canadians pay for the exact same prescription. We're bombarded here with TV commercials for prescription drugs, which makes me think they're rolling in money to be able to afford all that media coverage.
I was driving through Canada recently listening to the news about health care since there was a big powwow in Ottawa with the premiers and prime minister.
What is emergency care?
They interviewed 2 people that needed cataract surgery and had been waiting for a year. One man's sight had deteriorated to the point he could no longer see to drive or to write or type anything. But since he wouldn't die from it...
A woman was interviewed said even if she had the surgery that day (after a year wait) her vision would not return to the state it would have if she had it sooner, but she wouldn't die from it...
A man called in who had Parkinson's and a medication was being held up that while it would not "cure" him it would give him a better quality of life by cutting down on the tremors.
A doctor called in and said that it would take more than throwing more money at the problem. He pointed out that there are only 30 slots for training new opthamlogists (?) in Canada. That more facilities and nurses need to be built and trained. He talked about how more and more private clinics are being built because people don't want to wait for such procedures as cataract surgery.
There are pros and cons in both health systems.
BTW, my husband paid nothing when he was in the hospital with his heart failure. There is a $300/yr cap on any prescription meds. I take a med that costs $1,000/mo and I pay only $25. Of course, we have health insurance which we pay part of
Things are changing (surprise surprise).
Trusts are being dissolved, and "Local Health Care Cooperatives" are being replaced with "Community Health Partnerships" with a wider remit involving Social Work.
I'm involved in the redesign work for our region
glad you are doing better Mike,
I am a firm supporter of the UK and European socialized education and healthcare.
I think the USA would benefit from such programs; only then will we truly be a great equal nation. I am loudly shouted down by my fellow American Republicans.....
It is as well to remember that the NHS was introduced by the Atlee government ( Labour ) in the 40's amidst vigorous opposition from The Tory government and especially the Doctors, who believed that they would lose out financially.
IMHO it has generally worked very well and Britain has every right to be proud of this genuinely socialist vehicle. Everybody in the UK is offered health coverage, prescriptions are affordable and though the waiting list may be long, it is no longer then here in Canada where we pay a lot more that CAD$16.00 per month for medical, and prescriptions are horrendously expensive. Some seniors that we know of personally, pay up to $200 per month for prescriptions on a Senior Citizens pension of around $400.00 per month. The US system, which really is the ugly face of Capitalism, is even more punitive. People frequently go bankrupt trying to pay medical bills, and medication can be extremely expensive. An utter disgrace.
Britain has ever right to be proud of its system which while nowhere near perfect, is preferable to many others.
Best regards - HS
PS - Hope that things are improving with your health Mike.
(listen up George W)
I got first class treatment when I broke my ankle. The onlt thing I could not believe was the rules on smoking which was banned entirely throughout the hospital!!!