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"Does private health care benefit the NHS?"

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Introduction

"Does private health care benefit the NHS?" Private health care is increasingly becoming a very delicate issue. There are so many varied arguments for the expansion or even closure of private health care services. Since 1979 when the Conservative Government took power there has been a sharp rise in private health care from 4% to 13%. However now with the Labour Government in office this figure has dropped to 11% and may be likely to drop further in the future with the present Labour government in power. Private health care is predominantly paid for by insurance schemes paid by an employer or the patient. These schemes are run by companies such as BUPA (British United Provident Association) and PPP (Private Patients Plan). This is now heavily taxed by the Labour government to the dislike of the Conservative Party and therefore further fuelling the situation. ...read more.

Middle

Private hospitals do not provide on-site emergency facilities; consequently if a crises develops they have to be shifted to a NHS hospital. This effectively means private hospitals deal with the services they want to provide. This is unfair on the NHS and certainly it does not benefit from it, as more public money has to be spent. On the other hand, in some cases the private system relieves pressure from the NHS. In standard operations people do not need to visit a NHS hospital therefore if people choose private medicine they are in fact lessening the burden on the NHS, as there is less people to provide a service for. The pay beds, which exist in our hospitals for private patients, give extra income to the NHS. These pay beds, however, leave less room for public patients although the extra revenue does benefit the NHS. ...read more.

Conclusion

As an advantage for private health care a moral argument exists. Private patients contribute to the NHS through their taxes and National Insurance contributions. This means that they are still giving money to the NHS although they are not receiving care. Also when people use private medicine they are helping to add to the total amount off resources spent on health care. This again illustrates the benefit of the private sector. In conclusion, Private health care does benefit the NHS to some extent with some pressure being relieved and the training of nurses with post graduate qualifications and alike. Nevertheless, the subject is delicate as private health care undermines NHS efficiency and draws away some nurses from public hospitals. I believe the two-tier system created by the private sector is unequal and as a democracy should not exist within our health system. Therefore private health care should be either eradicated or have its participation lowered because it is fundamentally wrong. ...read more.

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