Thursday, 27 August 2009

NHS vs private a personnal opinion

As promised a health care related post. I was reading the junior doctors blog earlier and came across this post The Junior Doctor it something I intended posting on after my accident ( post is HERE ) but never got round to however after recent events ill post it now. The NHS really does seem to get a lot of negative press which in my opinion it doesn’t deserve.

I posted a few weeks back about being involved in a car accident the care I received after this was excellent, today I had to go back to the hospital for a check up due to having asthma and my chest being injured in the accident.

Now bare in mind ive only had one serious asthma attack and that was my fault. Cycling 5 miles then trying to spar for an hour when you have exercise induced asthma and haven’t took your preventer inhaler isn’t a good idea. Unless I want to do the likes of above I can get away with not taking anything so not really a case for regular hospital checkups. However the consultant I saw today was excellent answered all my questions etc and reassured my mother. Definite thumbs up – This was an NHS appointment as I was automatically referred back to him due to being taken to an NHS A&E. My appointment was at 9am and I was seen on time and out of the hospital by 10am.

Now we do have private medical insurance – the reason why ill explain in a later post.

Now day before yesterday my mam went into have the leaders in her toe cut and her toe straightened. This was at one of the local hospitals run by our insurance company. She had to be in for 7.30am and was booked to go down to theatre at 9am we were told she was the 1st patient of the day. Now remember this is a private hospital that does not deal with emergencies, she eventually went to theatre at 11am.

When ive previously been to this hospital all relatives are offered coffee etc while they wait for the patient to come back from theatre and are told before they arrive so they can be waiting for their relative. On this occasion no coffee and my mam was back on the ward an hour before we were told she was back not good when this operation is costing the insurance over 10k.

Now im prepared to forget about this and just get mam ready to go home, the consultant came back around and rudely said to my mam she was free to go at 3pm. Didn’t answer any of my mams questions or anything.

After the drip had finished my mam asked the nurse to remove the IV 9 times only to be told certainly ill come back in a few minutes to do this. After wandering round a few times it was obvious the nurse weren’t short staffed but rather sat drinking coffee at the nurses station. Now im well aware they need time to relax but there were 10 nurses and HCA sat at the nurse station and 5 patients on the ward. The staff ratio is meant to be 1 nurse and 1 HCA to a patient with each consultant only having 4 patients booked in per day and each consultant having a SHO or registrar.

As said the consultant discharged my mam at 3pm it was 5pm by the time the nursing sister came and removed my mam IV so she could leave the ward.

Overall not good service.
In the case of my accident I had
Chest xray
Neck and back xray
Bloods and blood gas
Leg xray
Pelvic xray and scan
Wound on my shoulder stitched

The whole time the doctor was explaining what was going on a reassuring me on a level appropriate to me.

I was out of A&E with 6hours yes that not within the governments targets but considering the amount of test run it seems fast turnaround especially considering what my mam has just had at a private hospital with less than a quarter of the number of patients.

Personally god forbid anything like that happens again I’d much rather be treat in an NHS hospital.

The service provided by the ambulance service was also great and much better than I experianced when taken by private ambulance with an asthma attack as mentioned above. Again this was to the same private hospital as treat my mam this week.

Yet unlike the rubbish Medic999 and RandomReality have to put up with the private guys only get private patients and are unlikely to ever deal with drunks or be assualted.

My whole experiance has really made me realise how much we as a population dont appriciate what the NHS offers us.

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