Saturday, 10 October 2009

NHS divisions based on wealth

A couple of days ago I heard someone giving an answer to the present economic crisis. She thought we could all buy our meals if we are taken into hospital. This seems fairly reasonable at first glance but I have several reservations. Firstly it does next to nothing to beat the financial crisis. I hear you saying look after the pennies... but here we are looking for the tiniest fraction of a penny. You certainly would not bend down to pick this amount up in the street.

That leads me to my second point. If you only have a small charge then the cost of colllection may not even account for the cost of the meals, so you would not save anything. However my major concern is that some people do count the pennies and cannot afford to go into hospital if meals have to be paid for. Ah but they would have a safety net and this means that the cost of implementing a system of charging for meals has just gone up.

Our NHS was founded on the guiding principle that it was free at the point of access. The more little charges that you have then the more it affects the poor. The Black Report highlighted the division of care between the rich and the poor. We should heed this report and look to improve the health of the poor.

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  1. Our NHS is alone in this.. Yes..if you have a prolonged have a choice of meals...but you DO NOT have to pay for these meals..It takes the pressure off your visitors...etc! But..I have noticed the "in-patient" days are becoming shorter...not a bad thing if you have home support...but I was unsure what support was offered to single aged people!

  2. There used to be NHS wards dedicated to recovery which were for people who did not have friends of family. There has been a move away from this towards care in the community, but I am sure there will be 'packages' of care for those who need it.