We have friends in the UK, and they are able to afford private care sometimes. They are able to get drugs from the internet, and they often opt to go that way, because what is prescribed to them, they don’t like or they dont’ feel safe with (imagine that, taking drugs from India or China instead of your own country).
They use a private doctor when they can, but it costs an arm and a leg to go see him, and its cash only, but they feel its worth it, because he speaks English. The first doctor their family was assigned, spoke almost no English, he was what they call asian, which to us is Muslim, I think.
They will tell you, that what used to be a moderate visit to a good doctor, is now x10 the price for a good doctor, under the table, and its hard to get an appointment with them because of overbooking.
They will also tell you that healthcare there really is 2 classes now. Those who are financially stable and well to do, go to their own doctors with cash, and the rest get muzzie doctors and bureaucrat doctors, unless you are lucky (which I guess some people are they say).
Oh, and bribes. If you can’t afford a private doctor, they recommend bringing a few extra bucks with you to slip under the table. It helps grease things along, but not always.
My wife is Hungarian, and she commented that this is what it was like in Hungary before she came here to the US.
My SIL is in Germany, and said something similar the other day. They have private insurance from the states and have no problem seeing good doctors and getting prompt treatment. However, her German friends (unless they are very rich) get the socialized medicine. They have to take the whole day off to see the doctor, sit in the waiting room, hope they get called in that day, and then hope they don't have to wait forever for tests, xrays, etc.
Yeah, I can imagine it; I order from India all the time. Yes, Ranbaxy had a quality issue a couple years ago, but it is not as though the US pharmaceutical industry has never had a scandal or a drug pulled LOL!