National Health Service?

Three words, at least two lies.  From the UK Telegraph:

Let us examine a single payer medical care on a pragmatic basis… say, goals v. accomplishments.

“The key pledge of Labour’s NHS reform has been to reduce waiting lists and now the majority of patients are treated within the target of 18 weeks from seeing their GP.

However this will be reversed as junior doctors will be limited to working a 48-hour week, from their current 56 hours, it is claimed.”

So, plainly spoken, if one is diagnosed in January, treatment will occur sometime in May, which is heralded as an improvement, but only if we continue to work the junior doctors like rented mule.  Otherwise:

“It means patients will have to wait months for routine operations as surgeons prioritise emergencies rather than scheduled cases.”


“Doctors have calculated an average hospital trust outside London will lose the equivalent of three trainee surgeons and other specialities such as paediatrics, trauma, and intensive care are likely to be similarly affected.”

Government health care — brought to you with the same efficiency as the post office and with the same charm as an IRS audit.

Posted in

Dave in EH


  1. Dimsdale on March 13, 2009 at 3:12 am

    In the words of Robin the Boy Wonder, "Holy Crap, Batman!!"

    Why, oh why, won't the stinking liberal media be responsible for once and report what a dismal and predictable failure government health "care" is?  After all, it will affect them as well.  Doesn't a sense of self preservation supercede party loyalty for Democrats?  Are they just plain stupid?

    Once the health care system is ruined by Obama and the Dems, there will be no turning back.

    If the Republicans want a good hook onto which to hang their reelection stars, they would do well to pound this message home each and every time Obambi and the Dems bring it up.

    • PatRiot on March 13, 2009 at 6:05 am

      When the media covers the WHOLE story it is news & information.  When it gives us PART of the story it is propaganda.  And like the DC crew, it must be laid bare.  The influence and power of both will be rightfully eroded.  Same for big health care – it is nothing more than a glorified billing service and shouldn't dictate doctors actions.  We have given our power to these groups.  We can also get it back. 

  2. davis on March 13, 2009 at 3:36 am

    My surgeon told me in mid-Nov 2004 that I needed a hip replacement. I got a place  on the operating table in mid-May 2005. How many months is that?

  3. Dimsdale on March 13, 2009 at 5:48 am

    The wait for hip replacement surgery in Canada is an average of 14 months, and is dependent on your age, i.e. whether or not you are too old for it to be a benefit to society.

  4. davis on March 13, 2009 at 8:54 am

    That reply really helped my case. So I did not have to wait as long? Is that the point? Another tale: in Dec. 2007 I was diagnosed with prostate cancer, the doctor I would have liked to have to remove the prostate could not schedule me until the end of March 2008.

    Does it matter how long I would have had to wait in Canada? Just try to tell me or anybody else that there is no de-facto rationing of health care in the US.

  5. Dimsdale on March 13, 2009 at 12:14 pm

    Well, I am not going to get into another protracted web discussion with you and irk Steve. 

    I will finish with this: you seem to expect instantaneous care, which you will get with neither system.  It is just logistics.  But you will get faster, and by all accounts, better care under our current system, which in the case of some diseases, can make the difference between it being treatable, and you being a entry on the Obit page.  Similarly, you wanted a particular doctor, which is your choice, but you might have gotten faster service with another doctor.  If he/she is the best, you will have to wait along with all of the others who also want this doctor.  You say nothing about the quality of care, which has been repeatedly described as substandard (our standard) in Canada and Great Britain.  That is why patients there are coming here, not the other way around. 

    That is the bottom line: the only thing that people in this country have gone to places like Canada for is subsidized medicines, which the Canadians are paying for.  Otherwise, they are coming here.  Sure, some go to India or other places for cheap operations, but you usually get what you pay for.

    As P.J. O'Roarke stated, "if you thing this health care is expensive, just wait until it is free."  I don't think he was just talking about the price either.

    Have a nice day!

  6. davis on March 14, 2009 at 12:36 am

    I will also be brief: I do not live in Canada, India, UK or any other country. I live in the US where I get my health care. What they do somewhere else is of NO consequence to what I get here, paid by me. All the comparisons you want to make are irrelevant to the health care I receive here, until something changes. I  believe that the US can do a better job at it than the countries  you mention, IF we want to. AND, for your information, I do not expect instantaneous care, as you seem to assume.

    Banding about guesses as to what may be done in the US, is simply that: guesses. This matter deserves more than dismissal and speculation.

  7. Dimsdale on March 14, 2009 at 2:13 am

    I don't understand why you don't get this, but isn't the whole point of this post and comments about "something changing?"  The models that Obama (and previously, Hillary) are using are those of Canada and GB.  Go listen to them.  They want that system.  They may tweak it, but the outcome will be the same, just as it is every single time it is tried.  That is why "what they do somewhere else" IS of consequence to you and every other American.

    You sit and criticize (dare I say bash?) our system in comparison to others, but when the comparison doesn't work in your favor, it is of "no consequence."  Anyone reading this thread can see that you are (hopefully) purposely being opaque.  Playing Devil's Advocate can be fun, but it contributes little to the solution.  I hope you see that.

    Sorry, Steve!

  8. davis on March 14, 2009 at 2:26 am

    I think you are dense on purpose. It is you who keeps pointing out how bad the other systems are and fail to recognize that there are problems with ours. I gave you TWO personal experiences and you dismiss them because you can bring out other issues as counters. The other issues are of NO consequence to what I experienced. If you challenge this  you are even denser than I thought.

    I am not playing Devil's Advocate, I am reporting actual events and there are millions of the same stories that can be reported.

    You want to tell your your side of the story? I am telling mine. If you think this is opaque, read it again.

  9. Dimsdale on March 14, 2009 at 3:03 am

    Okay, I'm the dense one.  I point out that our system clearly has its own problems, but they pale in comparison to the system that the Democrats and Obama are trying to foist on us.  You point out that you had to wait for two different treatments, and blithely ignore the fact that if Obama implements his desired system, your wait for future treatments will be greatly lengthened, and, given your apparent age, quite possibly be disallowed altogether.

    Please put the facts together and understand the reason for Wyndeward's post: it is not there to simply point out how bad other systems are.  We are talking about Obama, in a misbegotten attempt to create "universal health care,"  publicly planning to turn our system, with all of its apparent faults, into a system where the faults are demonstrably greater, the care less, and the costs actually higher.  You keep pointing out how terrible our system is.  Okay, we've established that, and I pointed out how people from countries with systems like Obama proposes come here to get prompt and proper health care, not the other way around.  That is called proving my point.

    Since this is apparently all about you, posit this: if the system becomes like those in these "inconsequential" countries next year, and Obama has clearly stated his intent to do so, will your health care get better or worse?  Will you have more or less to complain about?  Please tell me how things will get better, since you obviously believe that they could not possibly get worse.

  10. davis on March 14, 2009 at 3:35 am

    I'll try one more time. I did not say our system is bad or terrible or anything of the sort. In fact, since you need to know that, the systems saved my butt more than once and I am grateful for it.

    Everything you keep pointing out is conjecture: Pres. Obama has not changed the system we have at all, in spite of its problems. Pointing out that there are problems in other systems does not make ours better. In case it is of interest to you, when one needs medical care, one does not particularly care what the system is like (foreign or domestic): one simply wants to have the care, period! You have no point to prove, you simply speculate on the future. Your presumed proof is crystal ball.

  11. Lazybum on March 14, 2009 at 11:58 am

    Davis- you are the only one I know who has to wait for healthcare in the US. I suspect there is something you are leaving out. I have seen the E-Room in hartford and personally waited with a very sick INSURED relative for in excess of 8 hours while the uninsured marched in to get treatment for what appeared to be average colds.

    My point is, in theis land you love to hate, I never once have seen anyone go without. Maybe it wasn't exactly what they wanted, but they got help.

    I am trying to remember the last time I saw a line of Americans waiting to go to get medical care in a socialist country. Can't think of  any time ever seeing that. How about you?

  12. Linda Mae on March 14, 2009 at 7:36 pm

    My mom is a breast cancer survivor.  Medicare allows her a mammogram every 6 months on the side the cancer was removed but requires her to wait 1 year to check the side which was "cancer free."  Where's preventative medicine?  It can only get worse with the Gov. making the rules.  The reports from Canada and the UK have convinced me that we don't want to follow their plans.

    • Lucinda on March 15, 2009 at 10:11 am

      Once a year on the healthy side is the norm, even for breast cancer survivors. Why subject healthy tissue to any more radiation than necessary?

      By the way, I am considered to be high risk, I have health insurance, and have mammograms on the same schedule as your mom. I am more than comfortable with that schedule.

      And you're right, if the government were in charge, it would only get worse.

  13. weregettinghosed on March 19, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    I think the point needs to be made that we have great health care, but we need to change the costs to where they are reasonable for everyone to afford. There are thousands of things that are vastly overcharged. An injection costing 5000, just to administer the injection, come on. Bandaids costly hundreds, aspirin costing 50 bucks a pill, come on. Bring down the prices to actual costs, give services a price within reason and you will see health care become affordable. Let our capitalism spurn competition and watch things change. Blame the insurance companies for paying these prices and allowing the skyrocketing costs.

    We don't want substandard care. Look at Canada, just in the news, Natasha Richardson, needed immediate surgery, which is protocol when a head injury shows extreme swelling or bleeding which is what happened in this case. Why and where were the trauma doctors? Nowhere. No one had the expertise to handle her, and they waited until it was too late. How many of us want this care to be norm here? I don't.

    Fix the problem but don't break what is not broken. We have the best health care, lets preserve it but provide it more reasonably.

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