What We Can Learn From Great Britain About Health Care
Great Britain has long been one of our strongest friends in the free world. But lately it seems like our two countries are moving in opposite directions. David Cameron, the current Prime Minister of the United Kingdom has announced drastic spending cuts for many of the government programs and has indicated that more cuts are coming, unlike the Obama Administration, which continues to engage in deficit spending, and is looking for additional stimulus money to help a tottering economy.
Cameron has also indicated a far different approach on their health care program. The United Kingdom has for years had a form of socialized health care, one that our new director of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, says he “loves”. According to Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) they are going to make some “changes” in their health care system. They recognize that government-run health care leads to increased cost, less quality care, and yes, rationing of health care. Faced with a budget/deficit crisis, the United Kingdom, in trying to deal with a national health system that has become so cumbersome and difficult to administer, has decided to decentralize its national health care system.
According to the New York Times, “practical details of the plan are still sketchy. But its aim is clear: to shift control of England’s $160 billion annual health budget from a centralized bureaucracy to doctors at the local level.”
Britain’s Sunday Telegraph reports that the NHS is planning widespread cuts, including restrictions on some of the most basic and common operations, including hip and knee replacements, cataract surgery and orthodontic procedures.
The British health care system is a blueprint for the failure of Obamacare, as it is structured. We need to work to repeal Obamacare and replace it with the kind of health care choices that the American people want. That doesn’t include government run health care. Nor does it include rationing of health care for one of our most respected groups – our seniors. Hopefully, we will learn from the failures of the NHS.