• JamesW

    “encourage people to liver healthier lives”

    Freudian slip? Hic!

  • Kerry Manning

    Sadly, Victoria, I think you have hit a rather unfortunate nail on the head here. It is a grim truth that the NHS probably won’t last much longer, it is just deeply worrying that many in the UK won’t be able to cope without it. For many years I considered myself against privatised healthcare, but utilitarian dreams are all well and good until, like you say, it comes to footing the bill, and ultimately the strain it creates on the services naturally lowers the standard the NHS is able to provide. But I do worry about what will happen to the poorest in our society with the removal of free healthcare, with cuts to many local services already affecting plenty of people in the less affluent areas of the country. Grim times ahead.

    Great article by the way, incredible well researched and written.

    • http://www.thebackbencher.co.uk Victoria Monro

      Thank you for your comment. :) I completely agree that it makes for a grim image if the poor and vulnerable can’t access good healthcare as a consequence of removing the public, universal NHS system as it presently is – however I would say that a system by which the poor/vulnerable could access good healthcare would still be possible. In contrast, making this system work for everyone (or indeed, anyone) is impossible.

      • TheRedMage

        I guess there would be no “poor/vulnerable” people with chronic health conditions and disabilities in your anarcho-capitalist utopia because they would have all died out due to lack of medical care. I am happy to saw that I do not share your extremist law-of-the-jungle beliefs.

  • J A Jones

    Nothing will improve until individual patients have to make a personal financial contribution to their treatment. Something for nothing is not valued by most people.

  • Dougie

    “free rein”

    • http://www.thebackbencher.co.uk Victoria Monro

      Both rein and reign in this context are acceptable (modern “free reign” is now accepted), but as someone who is concerned with linguistic purity, I concede on this, and have changed it :)

  • http://libertyscott.blogspot.com Libertyscott

    Excellent post, it would be a leap forward if debate on the NHS moved on from the “it’s the NHS or America” banal dichotomy.

    Most developed countries have some sort of mixed private/public, insurance or personal contributory model. Outcomes are as good or better than the NHS, and there isn’t an issue of lack of access.

    The NHS model is broken, neo-Soviet and fundamentally incapable of delivering the incentives needed to stop the malpractice that we have now seen exists in many parts of the sector.

    Moreover, moving to an insurance based model will start delivering incentives upon people to consider the health care costs of their lifestyle decisions, rather than calls to tax and regulate the lot of us, for the poor choices of a minority.

  • TheRedMage

    Presumably under Monro’s ideal situation, people like myself who have lifetime incurable chronic conditions (and thus uninsurable by private insurance) would be practically euthanised by laissez-faire. Nice.

    • Ben Poser

      Only seems fair though mate doesn’t it.
      It makes for a “grim image” but chin up ‘ey.

  • http://twitter.com/tmaslen Tom Maslen

    I’d be more inclined to believe this if there was evidence to back up your claims. Why are there 3 types of people joining the NHS? The compensation numbers stated are high but how do they compare against other systems? Do other countries have the same obligation to care for everyone like the NHS?

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  • Ben Poser

    I could send you plenty of other statistics that point in the other way to you, and also plenty of strong arguments for paternalism (not that it’s necessarily my thing).

    I really object to the whole we have to pay for the mistakes of everyone else. Why should the fact they have made mistakes stop us treating them like people. They are still people. We can have this conversation in the common room sometime though.

    I’ve also got some good videos on how market incentives really fucked everything up in education, healthcare and other public services.
    I can also send you some interesting arguments that introducing markets to areas seriously corrupts original societal norms.
    I personally much prefer the idea of people going into healthcare to help people than to make money.
    Put the focus on money in healthcare and things are not going to go well for you.

    I definitely do understand the ageing population concerns etc.
    These are reasons to better fund the NHS though not just give up.
    So many lives at stake.
    It’s a pretty grim image having no NHS, at the very least I would like to hear more about a proposed alternative.
    Lets not throw something away that has done so much good so hastily.