so this is why hospitals must be made easier to close – payg healthcare

Nuffield was once a wonderful source of inspiration for me.  I studied, if I remember rightly, its Physics syllabus of practical and experimental learning.  Today, however, this admiration for everything it stood for has collapsed in a heap of conceptual ashes.  I’m talking about this healthcare flyer which came through my letterbox.

Nuffield health flyer

The headline reads as follows:

Get affordable pay-as-you-go healthcare when you need it.

It then goes on to say:

Healthcare that lets you get on with your life

You don’t need healthcare insurance to get all the advantages of private healthcare.  With pay-as-you-go healthcare from Nuffield Health Chester Hospital, you can get the treatment you need when you need it.

The affordable alternative

Pay-as-you-go makes private healthcare far more accessible.  A simple, one-off payment covers everything, with no hidden extras.  You may also be eligible for interest-free credit, so you can spread the cost without paying more.

Yippee!  Interest-free credit!

No wonder Jeremy Hunt wants to acquire the power to easily close down local hospitals.  With the likes of Nuffield Health Chester Hospital and their PAYG plans around, who in their right minds would voluntarily move from a competent free-at-point-of-use system to a PAYG equivalent – however private?  Unless, of course, your local hospital simply disappeared …

More from Nuffield on PAYG hospital treatments (plus prices, of course, via a drop-down menu) can currently be found here.  As one example of this PAYG wonder, cataract surgery at the Chester location costs as follows:

Patient Pathway Initial Consultation Pre-assessment Main Treatment Post-Discharge Care Total Cost:
Hospital Fees No charge Included Included Included
Consultant Fees £150 Included Included Included
Guide Price Guaranteed Price
Cost £150 £2290

The disclaimer does run as follows, mind:

The price displayed for your initial consultation is a guideline only as Consultant fees vary according to their own individual fee schedules. The price displayed above however for pre-assessment, main treatment and post-discharge care is guaranteed and inclusive of all costs.

So anyhow, what do you think about the prospect?  This world where ideological government can close your nearest NHS hospital at the drop of a surgeon’s mask, obliging you to fork out two and a half thousand quid or face encroaching loss of sight …

I mean, is this really what the British public actually thought they were letting themselves in for when they allowed the Coalition to come to power?  PAYG healthcare?

Oh, and as a final by-the-by, this flyer was delivered to an area of staunch social housing.  Just imagine what you’ll be getting in the leafier parts of Chester: contract varicose veins, anyone?

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