August 03, 2006


The Welfare State continues it's slow decline into irrelivancy, reliant as it is on central government rationing of sevices it will never be able to provide as good a service as a system that uses a market for it's rationing. An example would be this story (via DK) of a man with only months to live being denied treatment by the NHS because his need wasn't great enough. He was able to get treatment within days by not using the NHS. We have heard stories like this before, such as this man with a brain tumour that only got it diagnoused because his colleagues had a whip round to pay for his getting the scan he needed privately. Had he waited for the NHS he would have died. Or this one (via The Englishman) about a deaf toddler refused treatment on both his ears because the powers that be thought he only needed one. Waiting lists are completely unheard of in market based systems, such as in France or Germany, but for a centrally rationed system like the NHS they are a requirement. So much so that any attempt to reduce waiting times below the government proscribed times will lead to financial penalties. Hence why some trusts secretly run a system of two waiting lists, the official one and the waiting list to get onto the waiting list, just to make sure that the lists are always at the time that will maximise the resources that central government directs to each Trust.


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