I would like to argue that parts of the health system in the UK has always been privatised, but not in the way people realise. I am not talking about BUPA and the other commercial private health providers, but the many charities which claim to act like health services.
if we take cancer, if we take the advertising messages of Cancer Research UK and Macmillan Cancer Support, we are led to believe they are totally responsible for the treatment of cancer patients which leaves me wondering what the NHS is doing. And if the NHS is free at the point of delivering, why are cancer patients begging on TV to ‘save lives’? Does that not give the message that we will only get cancer treatments if we make the right donations to the right charities?
And if these charities are funded by the public to find cures. why are the drug companies charging the NHS a fortunate for new drugs to cover the cost of research the public has already paid for? I have never understood it and I think it is time people got an explanation.
Children’s health is another area which is funded by charity which suggested the NHS has such a low opinion of ‘our future generation’, they pass the burden to charities. I know it is not this simple but that is the message we get.
The government should clarify the relationship between charity and the NHS so people can realise where their hard earnt money is really going.