For Sixty years I wasn’t much of a burden on the Health Service. Then as I moved out of middle age never to return I began to be more of one. The older you are the more you need care and treatment. And that costs.
The blood thinning drugs I take for Atrial Fibrillation are expensive, but they work and enhance my life. The medication I take for my fairly recently diagnosed epilepsy likewise. My NHS provided hearing aid and the service alongside it enhances my quality of life as well.
I’m pretty sure that my situation is matched by millions. I paid my taxes for forty years a significant part of which was allocated to healthcare I didn’t need. Now I pay much less tax but draw on my “free at the point of use” healthcare rights rather a lot. The NHS says “It costs three times more to look after a seventy five year old and five times more to look after an eighty year old than a thirty year old …today, there are half a million more people aged over 75 than there were in 2010.”
Somewhere in my common story there is a solution trying to get out. Of course my taxes were general including Trident as well as my Grandpa’s teeth. I didn’t pay them in in order to draw on my money pot later when I needed. But maybe I should have? Not to the private sector but to the NHS? Do we need to rethink National Insurance so that it is more specific in its use and more personal?
One thought on “Funding the NHS – do we need a more personal link?”
The solution for improved funding for state healthcare lies just across the channel. When I lived in France I realised the state healthcare is among the finest in the world but also one of the most expensive.
Everyone in France requires a top-up mutuelle insurance the cost of which rises with age. The state only pays 75% of treatment costs. It’s complicated and heavily bureaucratic but it works. Everyone must be accepted regardless of condition.
The French health service saved my wife’s life. The village doctor who would call to my house at any time of the day or night also treated my late mother and immediately recognised her problems. He was superb. A vision of how family doctors were once in Britain.
The French hostitals and clinical care are simply amazing and of such a standard Britain can only envy.
The reason is simple. Massive state investment in education, training, and healthcare need. High-quality salaries for the lowest level of nursing. Huge rewards for the best in the profession.
Public-Private partnership through health insurance is the only effective method of increasing investment in state health care in the UK. It’s either that or massive tax hikes.
Personally, I would support either. I would I am old and my wife and I need state healthcare like the air we breathe.
The young don’t want the financial burden to pay for the elderly. However, if they could recognise through education that one day the need will arrive at their door I believe they would.
Insurance is simply a form of compulsory saving until the need to cash up arrives.