2024-03-30 14:29

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New Study Shows Healthcare Privatisation Harms Public Health

Based on the evidence available, our Review provides evidence that challenges the justifications for health-care privatisation and concludes that the scientific support for further privatisation of health-care services is weak.

The senior medical journal in the UK, The Lancet, has published this month a new report that examined healthcare in a number of countries which came up with the stark conclusion that meets with the opinions and concerns of organisations fighting against the policies of all UK political parties calling for increased privatisation of NHS hospitals and medical services.

As an example, already all NHS diagnostic services such as X-ray, CT Scans and MR Scans are now transferred or being transferred to the private sector with the Government promising further funding to private healthcare companies to increase their diagnostic services.

Furthermore, eye care monitoring of diabetes patients in England has largely been transferred to the private sector with the NHS writing to patients to advise them of this fact along with a small list of the private healthcare services available on their area.

This includes more and more cataract surgery too!

In the 'Discussion' part of the report, the authors state:

'We reviewed and summarised the evidence on the effects of outsourcing health services on quality of care, focusing on those studies that provide the strongest evidence because they used longitudinal data that enabled changes to be tracked over time.

This Review depicts reforms that frequently change the provision of health care and reduce the comprehensiveness and the generosity of care. Unfortunately, these efficiency gains do not seem to be benign, as studies suggest that outsourcing tends to worsen health outcomes.

The majority of studies in this Review suggest that privatisation reduces the quality of care and worsens the health outcomes of patients treated in privatised health-care settings.'

The report which compared the healthcare systems of the several countries including the USA and the UK is available to read/download from the Unionsafety E-Library using subject category 'NHS'

But be warned, that the stark conclusion of this study provides for alarming reading, just at a time when increases in the UK of avoidable deaths of patients being denied care or receiving poor diagnosis and hospital treatments can only worsen under the current Government and the policies of both opposition parties, Labour and Liberals:

'There is only a small number of studies addressing the effect of privatisation on the quality of care offered by health-care providers, and yet within this small group of longitudinal studies, we find a fairly consistent picture.

At the very least, health-care privatisation has almost never had a positive effect on the quality of care.

But outsourcing is not benign either, as it can reduce costs, but seems to do so at the expense of quality of care. Overall, our Review provides evidence challenging the justifications for health-care privatisation and concludes that the scientific support for further privatisation of health-care services is weak.'

Based on both the Tory and Labour policies that are on offer at the next general election, the return of anything like the NHS is looking extremely bleak in England; and along with it, the nations health!

Source: The Lancet

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