Skip to comments.Paying Patients Test British Health Care System
Posted on 02/21/2008 1:09:07 PM PST by neverdem
LONDON Created 60 years ago as a cornerstone of the British welfare state, the National Health Service is devoted to the principle of free medical care for everyone. But recently it has been wrestling with a problem its founders never anticipated: how to handle patients with complex illnesses who want to pay for parts of their treatment while receiving the rest free from the health service.
Although the government is reluctant to discuss the issue, hopscotching back and forth between private and public care has long been standard here for those who can afford it. But a few recent cases have exposed fundamental contradictions...
One of Mrs. Hirsts troubles came, it seems, because the Avastin she proposed to pay for would have had to be administered at the same time as the drug Taxol, which she was receiving free on the health service. Because of that, she could not schedule separate appointments.
But in a final irony, Mrs. Hirst was told early this month that her cancer had spread and that her condition had deteriorated so much that she could have the Avastin after all paid for by the health service. In other words, a system that forbade her to buy the medicine earlier was now saying that she was so sick she could have it at public expense.
Mrs. Hirst is pleased, but up to a point. Avastin is not a cure, but a way to extend her life, perhaps only by several months, and she has missed valuable time. It may be too bloody late, she said.
Im a person who left school at 15 and Ive worked all my life and Ive paid into the system, and Im not going to live long enough to get my old-age pension from this government, she added...
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
This is a smaller, below the fold story on the front page.
Sorry, Mrs. Hirst, but the system worked. It is a shame that you had to realize this while still alive. How else do you think it was designed? Why does Congress in the US not fret about the looming SocSec crisis? Answer, because they know they can Hirst us.
“But recently it has been wrestling with a problem its founders never anticipated: how to handle patients with complex illnesses who want to pay for parts of their treatment while receiving the rest free from the health service.”
Not unlike what happens in this counrty when you HAVE insurance.
That's what they were counting on, sweetie. Sorry...........
I hope the American people come to their senses. I just got off the phone with my HMO and I cannot tell you how frustrated I am over lack of choices, at annual enrollment time I will be switching plans.....to a non-hmo.
Coming to America via Hilabama.
Yep, she really said that.
Ain’t that special.
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