It is widely known that the after-effects of COVID are being felt widely across all sectors of healthcare, not just within the NHS. Many people have turned to private healthcare due to the extensive waiting lists for NHS care, the overall quality of care, and finding it too hard to get an appointment at their NHS surgery.
Seeking Care Elsewhere
When a survey was carried about about the practicalities of privatising the NHS and whether the average person could afford to use it, it was discovered that over half of the participants asked, 59% in fact, were unable to afford private healthcare. The authors of the Health and Care report for 2022 carried out by the IPPR said that this could lead to ‘an unequal, two-tier system emerging, where “a mediocre standard is available for everyone, but the best is only available to those who can and are willing to pay”.’
More than 1 in 10 patients turned towards private care during the pandemic due to many factors such as the availability of care and treatment, and access to such.
The NHS was established to create, quality healthcare available for all and sadly, seems to be in the decline of the service and we may all be looking at a privatised healthcare service.
if the NHS is unable to deliver effective and timely care to people, many will be turning towards private services. For those that can afford it, this makes sense, and ultimately relieves pressure on the NHS, allowing patients who cannot afford it to move up on the waiting lists. But with the cost-of-living crisis and increasing unemployment, many people will not be able to afford private insurance or pay for treatments outright.
Private Healthcare at Work
It comes as no surprise that 80% of society does not have private healthcare services as the NHS has been the standard we all turn to for a long time. However, it is not surprising that many would take a new employment role if it offered healthcare.
The same people also discussed the option of paying for certain elements of the NHS in order to push much-needed funds into the system. Treatments such as routine care procedures, and minor ailments that we pop to our local GP for and all take for granted as an available option. It was made clear that the cost of these minor procedures, however affordable, would make people avoid seeking help. Perhaps this could be beneficial for the NHS, as unnecessary appointments occur all the time and this could be a way of reducing those numbers. But would it price out the less financially secure from sourcing help at the onset of health problems, ultimately costing more in the long run as those minor ailments may progress further and become more serious down the line?
What do you think about the NHS? Should it become private and we all pay to see our GP?