Relieve the pressure
The NHS (or National Health Service) was founded in Britain in 1948, in the wake of the Second World War. It was during this time that a radically different vision for the future of healthcare was beginning to take shape, in which patients could receive immediate medical care and assistance when required – without having to pay any upfront costs.
Since then, the NHS has grown to become one of the worlds largest non-private healthcare providers which is supported through public funds. However, the unprecedented impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has put more strain and pressure on the NHS than ever before, and an increasing number of people are opting to be treated privately and fund the costs through private health insurance.
Those who have the financial means to do so are frequently turning to private medical providers such as the OneWelbeck Private Clinic in London, to ensure that they get the best immediate care available and do not fall victim to an already overstretched system at this most critical time.
Why go private?
One of the most common reasons that patients have for choosing private healthcare over the NHS is the waiting times. Typically, if you have a medical concern or issue which you are looking to treat through the NHS then you must first arrange a consultation or examination with your local GP (general practitioner).
The amount of time which each patient may have to wait varies depending on their location, and other factors such as the new social distancing measures. Whilst waiting times at NHS clinics and healthcare centres vary, in some cases they can be as long as two weeks or more.
Waiting times for private healthcare clinics, on the other hand, are typically far shorter. If patients wish to have immediate care or attention, they are often given the option of a digital consultation – which has become largely popular during the recent countrywide lockdown.
This allows private patients to have their medical needs assessed by a professional far quicker, and therefore gets them on the road towards treatment swiftly and easily.
Another appeal of private medical care, which has inspired a number of patients to make the switch, is the level of personal attention and care that private patients receive.
At an NHS funded healthcare centre patients may receive treatment from a number of different practitioners, and due to staffing and managerial shortcomings, it is common for a patient’s regular practitioner to often be unavailable as they are required elsewhere.
At private clinics however, there is a distinct focus placed on ensuring each patient is treated by a medical professional that they are familiar with and know they can trust. As such it is far more common for patients in private clinics to form long standing relationships with their doctors, which are founded on mutual respect and understanding.
In this current climate of uncertainty, there is a social responsibility that lies on all of us to protect the NHS from the pressures of overburdening by ensuring those who need it most get the attention they deserve. As such, those who are financially able to do so could help to relieve some of this strain by opting for private medical care.
We are all doing everything we can to protect ourselves, and those around us. Opting to go private with your medical care can potentially free up space for the NHS and those who need it most.