Wednesday, 30 December 2009

NHS “Consultation” and Parking.

When most people use a market they pay for a service.

For example, if you go to a shopping mall you pay for what you buy and you park for free even if you don’t buy anything.

Compare that with the current NHS “market” where the service is provided for free, namely your treatment, but “co-payment” link is not allowed so hospitals can continue to charge you for parking, television and phones for patients but comrade patient your treatment, whatever that is, free.

All the above are examples of the current NHS internal “market” which costs each of us a fortune in taxes but delivers no real healthcare benefit which is what the NHS is supposed to be there for – real healthcare, for all.

If you have paid taxes you have already paid for your treatment, already paid for the hospitals and already paid for the car park to be built that you are now being charged to park in.

If you go to a shopping mall the private sector have paid to build it, have paid to provide parking, provide parking usually for free and make a profit.

The NHS “market” struggles to break even.

So imagine our joy when we heard that our beloved health secretary, Andy Burnham, say there will now be an eight week “consultation” regarding NHS parking charges as they had “caused great resentment” to “ensure that plans were affordable at a time of pressure on NHS finances”.

No way man, surely not? Andy Burnham, the only politician in touch with the people after all these years.

What joy! Another NHS consultation which means they have already made up their minds and want a public “consultation” to rubber stamp their plans.

Parking charges are the only part of the NHS “market” that works i.e. makes a profit from a small initial outlay to provide a “service”. In this case the “service”, namely screwing the public and its own staff to pay for the privilege of using something the vast majority of them have already paid for, is now to be “consulted” about. Great.

Praise be to the Party for shopping malls. Parking is free, we usually get what we want on the first visit, and, apart from Christmas, there isn’t usually much of a wait.

Why hasn’t the NHS “market” done the same? Still after more than 12 years of both Parties charging for parking and talking markets at least someone has the decency to “consult”.

Don’t hold your breath too long. We are in a recession after all and 8 weeks on the National Debt will have grown some more. Anyone guessed the outcome?


Anonymous said...

Andy looks like an air hostess in that photo! :)

oliviascotland said...

It's supposedly "free" parking in Scotland - but you still have to pay in Edinburgh, Dundee and Glasgow as there is a "contract" that can't be broken. Bet it will turn out the same for Andy Burnham!