One in eight UK adults use private medical care due to NHS delays NHS | Daily News Byte

One in eight UK adults use private medical care due to NHS delays  NHS

 | Daily News Byte


One in eight adults in the UK have paid for private medical care in the last year because of long delays in accessing NHS treatment, renewing fears that the NHS is becoming a “two-tier system”.

“Nearly one in eight (13%) adults reported that they paid for private medical care, with 5% using private insurance and 7% paying for treatment themselves,” according to a new report from the Office for National Statistics.

Patients also say that waiting for tests or treatment affects them negatively, including making their illness worse.

The ONS report looks at how rising inflation and difficulties accessing NHS care are affecting people’s lives.

A survey of 2,510 adults across the UK found that one in five were waiting for an appointment, test or treatment at an NHS hospital. Among them in that case:

  • Three-quarters said their procrastination had a strong (34%) or slightly (42%) negative impact on their lives.

  • 36% said waiting made their condition worse

  • 59% said it has damaged their health

  • A third said the long wait had affected their mobility (33%) or ability to exercise (34%).

David Hare, chief executive of the Independent Healthcare Providers Network (IHPN), said: “With NHS waiting lists at record levels, it is no surprise that more people are paying for private treatment, including those who would never have considered it before. did not

“A recent IHPN poll shows that one in five people expect to use private healthcare in the next 12 months and almost half will consider private healthcare if they need treatment.”

Co-chair of the Keep Our NHS public campaign group, Dr. Tony O’Sullivan claimed that the numbers using private healthcare providers were “a damning indictment of the devastating impact of this Government’s mismanagement of the NHS over the last 12 years.

“One cannot fault the afflicted persons for seeking timely treatment under the circumstances, but it does not have to be this way.

“The NHS was rated the best in the world in 2010. Now healthcare in the UK is fast becoming a de facto two-tier system due to the degradation of one of our best assets, and ultimately we are all the poorer for it.”

Almost one in five Britons surveyed say they have been on an NHS waiting list for more than a year

The ONS report, for which survey work was carried out between November 22 and December 4, was released on Thursday as nurses went on strike in England, Wales and Northern Ireland in a dispute with the government over their pay.

Of the 20% who are on a waiting list, 70% said they have been waiting more than six months, while 18% have been forced to wait a year or more.

Figures from NHS England show the continued pressure the service is facing this winter.

The average number of patients treated in NHS hospitals this winter is now more than 94,000, the highest absolute number since winter 2014/15.

Although 94.4% of beds were occupied across the service last week, this level of bed occupancy is not unique to winter, but is much higher than the 85% level that generally threatens safety and efficiency.

One in six patients arriving by ambulance waited more than an hour for treatment in A&E in the week to December 11, equivalent to 12,534 patients, the highest level recorded in the past six winters.

One in three patients arriving at hospitals by ambulance are now waiting more than 30 minutes to be seen by A&E staff.

NHS England has recorded its busiest ever level of 111 calls outside the opening week of the Covid lockdown, driven in part by parents worried about rising Strep A infections.

And other pressures are also building: 1,248 general and critical care beds were required for flu patients each day last week, compared with 772 the previous week, a 62% increase. In the same week last year, only 25 beds were taken up by flu patients.

Meanwhile, the number of adult beds closed due to norovirus was up more than a fifth from the first week of December, with 457 beds closed last week.


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