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What might happen to the NHS if the Tories win the GE?

(49 Posts)
AngryofTunbridgeWells Sat 29-Apr-17 21:21:02

I have Type 1 Diabetes and it costs over £850 a month to keep me alive (I had to look it up and then was shocked!) While I have no health issues related to it, and have very good control, I also am aware that it is possible to have issues at some point regardless as it is something I have had for over 37 years.

I am reading a lot about how the NHS is crumbling and also how less and less money is being put into it. It may be the type of things I read and the people I know (who have similar 'lefty' views to myself) but I am also hearing that the Tories are likely to be wanting to privatise more and more of it.

Can someone please explain in simple terms if this means people like me, with pre existing medical conditions, would either have scarily high insurance premiums if it came to that, or not be able to get cover for anything connected to Type 1 Diabetes, and similar conditions, at all...?
Or, what might realistically happen with what is currently the NHS? Would it be like in the US, for example? (Of which I am not entirely sure how it works so off for a quick Google while I wait for replies!)

Thanks in advance!

purits Sat 29-Apr-17 21:27:56

I was thinking about this this morning. Every election since I don't know when, Labour have always trotted out "the NHS is safe with us" which is implying that it won't be safe with the Tories. And yet, despite several Tory Governments in the 70 years since the invention of the NHS, it is still there. How can this be?hmm
It's dog-whistle politics to pretend that only Labour can run the Health Service. It's about time that we called them on it.

AngryofTunbridgeWells Sat 29-Apr-17 21:32:49

Good point. But isn't there less and less money available for it and more things heading private now (Virgin Healthcare)? My sister works as a nurse and she says its 'frightening' and also my diabetic nurse says there is a ridiculous number of patients for a handful of medics - I guess these are the people I am getting a lot of opinions from

tribpot Sat 29-Apr-17 21:45:50

I don't think there's any real precedent for moving from the type of single payer healthcare we have currently to something more insurance based like the Netherlands. There are a lot of models of healthcare out there that are less punitive than the US one but which might achieve the goals of successive governments (both Labour and Conservative) to improve efficiency in the health service.

Based on the Dutch model, it looks as if you would have to pay for an advanced insurance policy (some of which exclude long term conditions) but you would not, for example, be uninsurable due to a pre-existing condition.

purits Sat 29-Apr-17 21:46:31

There isn't much money because it's all going on the privitisation PFI projects that New Labour signed us up to. Tony Blair and Gordon Brown got all the kudos for building hospitals but kept quiet about the fact that we will be paying over the odds for them for the next 50 years.

EtonMessi Sat 29-Apr-17 21:52:36

That's right trib, not to derail the thread but no insurer here in the Netherlands can refuse you coverage. For example in the OP's case she could sign up for any insurance she likes and they could not refuse her.

The system here works pretty well in general but I've read that it has one of the highest costs per capita. But for example mental health services I've accessed have been excellent and obviously well-funded, which was not my experience in the UK.

AngryofTunbridgeWells Sat 29-Apr-17 21:53:18

Tribot that's semi reassuring.

Puris that's awful!

Am off to do more Googling...

walkingtheplank Sat 29-Apr-17 22:21:02

There was a protest outside our local hospital yesterday. It was organised by the GMB union and attended by a Labour MP and a Labour candidate. The protest was against the hospital's closure. However, the hospital is not closing and there is no suggestion that it might close. It's actually having over £21m spent on a new A&E department at the moment.

I wonder if they'll start the 'x days to save the NHS' campaign again. Strangely, the NHS and our specific hospital survived the last election.

Previous poster was right about this being dog whistle politics.

vdbfamily Sat 29-Apr-17 22:21:39

I think there is some confusion about some healthcare services being provided for the NHS by private companies and the NHS disappearing and being replaced by a private healthcare model. For me, the important thing is that whatever healthcare is provided, it is of a high enough standard and free at the point of access for us. So, I do not have an issue in situations where there is a big long list of people awaiting hip replacements, so the NHS pays the local private hospital to do several of the procedures at an agreed price to reduce the waiting list. To me. that is just a sensible use of local resources. What worries me a bit though is companies like Virgin Health being profit making, however, if they can provide what they are asked to do as cost effectively as the NHS then it might be ok.

cdtaylornats Sun 30-Apr-17 12:30:45

With the Tories there is a chance the NHS will be funded, some functions might be handed over to companies who are more efficient.

With Labour it will run out of money. Look at the NHS in Scotland under the self-professed left-wing SNP if you want to see the outcome. The current joke is that the SNP are claiming a success because they have got appointments for maternity care down to 10 months.

tribpot Sun 30-Apr-17 15:55:26

some functions might be handed over to companies who are more efficient

Well, that's the theory. The reality is a bit more complicated, e.g. Capita running back office functions for the NHS, Circle running Hinchingbrooke, Capita (again) running recruitment for the armed services, Serco losing the contract for Defence Business Services.

However, Virgin Care in the example you give, OP, have won a contract to run an NHS service, so this in itself is not privatisation - although you can see how it could be a step along that path.

alreadytaken Wed 10-May-17 06:56:06

the one thing you can be sure that will happen is that you will end up paying a lot more for your health care than you do now. At the moment the NHS is still here - just, but god help you if you need an ambulance - but don't expect that to outlast 5 more years of a Tory government. Also with TMs latest promise to cut immigration it will be so understaffed that there will be so few staff left to treat you that you may die waiting to be seen. I have advised my child (student doctor) to emigrate.

As for the private sector being more efficient, that is a convenient lie with no proof to back it up. What we do know is that when people are paid for operations/test the numbers of unnecessary procedures increases.

peppatax Wed 10-May-17 07:04:56

alreadytaken it's a big leap to say that TM's promise to cut immigration means detriment to the health service. Unless she has specifically said that she's binning healthcare staff, I imagine the focus will be on skills not in need (more car washers?) than doctors, nurses and other HCPs.

Advising your student doctor child to emigrate is exactly the problem - well done for the 'me me me' approach but presumably said child wants to be a glory doctor on cosy hours rather than the dedicated and overworked ones we see in a crisis.

Onthehighseas Wed 10-May-17 07:07:05

Hinchingbrooke's sale was started by Andy Burnham however much he might try to wriggle out of admitting it, so privatisation is not just a risk under one political party...

Two4One2017 Wed 10-May-17 07:15:43

I was canvassing last night and I spoke to 2 NHS employees. Neither felt pouring more money into the NHS was a solution - they want to see inefficiencies, waste and health tourism (a problem in this particular area) tackled and more preventative measures to reduce obesity, diabetes etc in the first place. They want people to start taking more responsibility for themselves.

My dentist was saying how many more children now have cavities and fillings due to poor diet, too much sugar, juice etc.

UrsulaPandress Wed 10-May-17 07:20:44

The NHS needs a roots up overhaul. It is used as a political football, as is education.

taytopotato Wed 10-May-17 07:26:21

have a look here

[[ strong and stable, innit]]

missyB1 Wed 10-May-17 07:36:48

Hope the above link works I'm a bit of a technophobe sorry! Basically it's an article in the Bristish Medical Journal stating that under the coalition and this current government improving mortality rates has stalled. The stagnation coincided with the introduction of austerity measures, coincidence? Hmmm.. doubt it...

Sunnie1984 Wed 10-May-17 07:41:17

I keep hearing that the Tories will privatise the NHS, but as it's not something the Tories have actually said, there's no evidence that is going to happen.

Having lived in the Middle East where all healthcare was private, it's not a simple thing to turn the NHS private.

It would require lots of legislation and lots of negotiations with insurance companies before it can even begin to be sold off.

My private healthcare from work pales in comparison to the insurance cover I received in the Middle East. The insurance sector here simply isn't geared up for a private system as it stands at the moment.

The current NHS crisis is decades in the making and comes from an ageing population, the need to cut down on excessive management and on the rise in obesity, as well as lack of funding. It's not just the last five years of austerity which has caused the problems.

Brexit is likely to take up a lot of time, effort and energy for the next government. It's unlikely they will have the time to privatise the NHS.

taytopotato Wed 10-May-17 07:43:23

NHS is safe under the Tories

missyB1 Wed 10-May-17 09:01:28

Sunnie the way the NHS will be "privatised" is by
A. selling off lots of services to private companies (already happening)
B. creating a two tier system whereby there is a basic level of government funded care but specialised higher standard care for those with insurance. Already started to happen.

flowerpress Wed 10-May-17 09:17:39

As Tayotopotato points out with the above link the Tories are privatising the NHS bit by bit, weaking other areas and slowly, slowly like boiling a frog it will put us all in the position where we have no option but to privatise and pay for private health insurance. The very notion of an NHS, free at the point of delivery goes against the fundamental Ideology of the Conservative party and if you think otherwise you are very misguided. They know they cannot come out and just take it away all at once just like they know that cannot scrap social security all at once they have to do it bit like they have been doing over the past 7 years. Eventually we will all have to pay for extra unemployment or disability insurance as well if we keep on this track just check out the governments relationship with unum insurance going right back to the days of John Majors government.

If the Tories put privatising the NHS in the manifesto people would reject them in their droves, instead they will make it an unfortunate nessessity like they did with austerity and used that as a smoke screen to make the kinds of cuts to public services which are now on there knees.

I agree that in the past Labour have been as much to blame as the tories for undermining public services but I think that with Corbyn the Labour party really is going in a new and better direction which will benefit the health of our public services enormously. More money is of course not the only answer but I thinkt hat if you really want a stong NHS at the point of delivery then you need to vote Labour this time around.

flowerpress Wed 10-May-17 09:19:40

should be *free and the point of deliver in the last sentence!

cdtaylornats Wed 10-May-17 09:34:54

If you want the NHS to exist in 10 years time vote Tory. A bankrupt country will not be able to afford healthcare.

There is nothing wrong in privatising some parts of the NHS. Procurement, back office functions, building maintenance, office cleaning are all things other businesses farm out. I've not seen a company in years that hired their own cleaners or did their own payroll. It is ideological nonsense that the NHS has to do everything.

Nor is it wrong to hire in medical help when required. Staffing to cope with peak demand means you have staff idle much of the time.

wickerlampshade Wed 10-May-17 09:37:18

There isn't much money because it's all going on the privitisation PFI projects that New Labour signed us up to. Tony Blair and Gordon Brown got all the kudos for building hospitals but kept quiet about the fact that we will be paying over the odds for them for the next 50 years.

Yup. arguably Tony Blair did as much damage to the NHS as the conservatives have done. I laughed at the Labour canvasser on the doorstep who said they were the party of the NHS. not any more.

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