On Thursday 5th May the Times published an article by Chris Smyth, “Let us charge patients for extra services, GPs Urge.” Hidden behind a pay wall the article goes on to state that nine local medical committees that it would be “more convenient” for patients if doctors offered some vaccines and minor surgery not available on the NHS. In bold it states:
GPs are demanding to be allowed to charge patients for extra services to ease an NHS cash crisis and evade rationing.
The article goes on to state:
Ben Molyneux, vice-chairman of the City and Hackney local medical committee in London, who will present the proposal at a conference in Edinburgh this month, said it was about “allowing patients to get the non-NHS services they want to receive from the GP they know, at a surgery near to their home”. Some patients are not covered for vaccines such as shingles or the HPV anti-cancer jab on the NHS and Dr Molyneux said it would be easier if they could pay their own GP, rather than going to another surgery. At present patients can pay other GPs, but not their own, for such procedures. The rules are said to exist to prevent distortion of the patient-doctor relationship.
There are very real fears that if adopted a GP practice could increasingly cater for private patients as it earns more and more.
The Independent reported in March 2016 that: “Terrifyingly, according to the World Health Organisation definition the UK no longer has a NHS.”
It is clear that this is just the latest in a series of moves to privatise our NHS. We can be sure that if the Tories get in again they will continue the process of privatisation. There is the line:“You don’t know what you got, until you loose it.”
We must vote Labour to save our NHS.