The NHS - a stunningly cost effective supplier of high quality healthcare

"I suggest that the longevity problem is not a health issue: this is a societal issue. It’s the consequence of poor housing, inequality, poor health education, and many more such factors reflected in issues such as high obesity rates related to poor diet: a peculiarly British problem. The NHS cannot solve such problems. It’s not reasonable to berate it for failing to do so.

That aside, care is great in the NHS. OK. it’s not as patient focused as desired, but as the report says this is an issue where all countries could improve. No doubt that’s true, but we trade something important here: price for patient focus. Of course people can be at the core of the NHS, but you seriously increase the cost if you double the time seeing the patient: most of NHS cost is labour. The choice is a straightforward one: you can have a patient focused NHS so long as you’re willing to pay for it. If you are not willing to pay for it the patient focus will come at the cost of significantly reduced health outcomes. It’s a trade-off that I think most would not make if they were given the choice. I think the NHS has got this right."

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