Prime Minister Cameron plans to reform Britain’s government-run health-care

Will Rahn
The Daily Caller

As the United States prepares to introduce the massive new health-care program known as Obamacare, Britain’s Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron said on Monday that he plans to significantly reform his country’s state-run health-care system due to the program’s massive cost and lackluster performance.

Cameron’s plan calls for allowing patients’ general practitioners more control over treatment, in contrast to the current system, in which government bureaucrats wield greater control. His government argues that this is the only way to increase productivity while controlling costs.

Reforming the popular National Health Service, a massive government agency tasked with ensuring free “cradle to the grave” health insurance for every UK citizen, has long been considered the third rail of British politics. During a radio interview with the BBC on Monday, Cameron called Britain’s much-vaunted NHS “second rate.” The opposition Labour party quickly pounced, calling Cameron’s statement an insult to “millions of NHS staff.”

The article continues at The Daily Caller.

At Verum Serum, John writes:

…This is a touchy subject in Britain because the NHS has regularly been accused of being second-rate by the press. Last year I put up a website and collected dozens of these stories in an attempt to warn Americans what we had to look forward to under national care. Sample story:

Patients who have major surgery in Britain are four times more likely to die than those in America, according to a major new study.

The comparison of care, which reveals a sevenfold difference in mortality rates in one set of patients, concludes that hospital waiting lists, a shortage of specialists and competition for intensive care beds are to blame.

Fresh evidence of a stark contrast between the fate of patients on either side of the Atlantic will re-open the debate over whether NHS reforms are having any impact on survival rates.

That’s from 2003, but there are many more recent stories in that list. In fact, this one appeared in the Daily Mail yesterday:

‘Substandard’ NHS maternity care may have caused the deaths of 21 babies, a damning report has found…

The entire Verum Serum article can be read here.

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