Tuesday, April 28, 2015

This sickly'd isle

So, we were recently told that, Markets improve efficiency for lots of things, but healthcare clearly isn't one of them. Specifically;
And you want to tell me there are all these imperfections in the U.S. medical market, but the U.K. is pretty close to pure socialized medicine, with the providers being government employees. So the U.S. system is far more market-oriented than the U.K. system -- yet the U.S. system is more than twice as expensive. You want to compare imaginary market outcomes rather than look at what really happens in medical markets. 
Along comes Deutsche Welle to supply the proof to the fools;
"My husband was told he would have to wait three weeks for a doctor's appointment last year," says local Kath Goodwin. "At the time, he was severely clinically depressed and was talking about taking his own life."

Another resident, Graham Hodgkiss, tells the meeting how he fell from a roof in 2013 and can now walk only with the aid of crutches. After two years on a waiting list with his health and mobility further deteriorating, he has just been told he must wait a further six months for an operation.
Reese Williams, a local musician, shares the story of how he found an abscess a year ago, and called his doctor in panic. "I was waiting over an hour and had to redial 22 times just to get through," he says. Later, he was left with open wounds that required daily dressing - but was left without treatment for several days.
The stories continue. Penny Rutherford speaks out: she was diagnosed with cancer in 2014 and has undergone extensive chemotherapy, but says she can't now get a doctors' appointment within three weeks when related conditions flare up. "They say I'm not a priority, and they can only see emergency cases," she says.
 The National Health Service, where they get what they pay for.


  1. 09/06/11 - Daniel J. Mitchell


    The Telegraph UK - National Health Service makes patients wait "to lower expectations".
    === ===
    [edited]  At least 10 primary care trusts (PCTs) in Britian have told hospitals to increase the wait to treat patients, to save money.

    Some patients endured delays of 12-15 weeks after their doctors decided on surgery, although hospitals could have seen them sooner. The allowed maximum is 18 weeks.

    One manager said "short waiting times create more demand for treatment". An NHS watchdog suggested that long wait times cause patients to remove themselves from the lists "either by dying or by paying for their own treatment". PCTs have gamed the system, using maximum limits to delay treatment.
    === ===

    When you control your own payment for health care, you are a valued customer. When you prepay through taxes, you are a cost and a statistic.

    1. Exactly right, Andrew. I found that out myself, the one time I needed surgery. When the doctor I'd been referred to had his secretary schedule me for an operation a month down the road, I called him and asked him to refer me to one of his colleagues who wasn't quite as busy.

      Two days later I was in the hospital awaiting my operation...from the same guy who had been booked solid, until I'd said I'd take my business elsewhere.