ObamaCare Meet the National Health Service

See the Future of Health Care in the U.S.

An appalling report in the U.K. Telegraph from Jeremy Hunt, the Health Secretary, describes conditions in English hospitals, where “NHS patients experience ‘contempt and cruelty’.”

Hunt’s speech included examples of “managers ‘so buried in spreadsheets’ that they had become ‘blind’ to the fact that patients were not being treated with dignity or respect.”  Other examples given:

  • Patients left to lie in their own excrement, a man with dementia supposedly monitored every 15 minutes who was able to leave the hsopital and drown;
  • An elderly woman with dementia punched and slapped;
  • A cancer patient who had to call the police for help because he lost one-third of his body fluids;
  • Over 1,200 patients dying at one hospital from lack of care, including some who had to resort to drinking water from flower vases.

According to Mr. Hunt, these examples were not “isolated incidents, but appeared with depressing regularity.”

Now, consider what has happened in the U.K. with their system of government-run, socialized medicine and think what is in store for the U.S. when $750 billion dollars are cut from Medicare to fund ObamaCare and a government bureacracy–a single committee–the United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF)—is empowered to evaluate preventive health services and decide which will be covered and to what extent by health-insurance plans.

The USPSTF has been in existence since 1984 but could only recommend; under ObamaCare it will have final authority. So the U.S. government thinks it knows more than the the patient or individual doctor when it comes to health care. How long before the U.S. has a system like the NHS?

Will Polypharmacy Be a Part of Obamacare?

If Obamacare follows the pattern of the U.K. National Health Service (NHS), and there is every indication that this is the hoped-for result by the designers of Obamacare, then there is a distinct possibility of this happening  in America. It is a part of the ever-increasing desire of the U.S. government for more control of the lives of U.S. citizens, as well as the deleterious results of socialized medicine, i.e., Obamacare.

An example already present is the attempt by doctors in the U.S. to insinuate that Medicare now requires a detailed patient history each year in order to get an annual “Wellness” exam. This questionnaire, the actual form of which is left open by Medicare requirements, is being used by some medical practices to gather invasive private information about patients, with little relevance to actual patient health. This loss of privacy of course will no doubt be accessed by the federal medical structure at some point. Such information easily can be used to lead to the practices described in a report by The Telegraph, published online 22 November 2012 (The Tablets That Do More Harm Than Good).

 This article points out that “In 2003, the mandarins at the Department of Health [NHS], when renegotiating the family doctors’ contract, saw an opportunity to raise standards by linking their remuneration to their success in achieving certain targets . . . rather than just assuming, as in the past, that GPs would identify such patients and treat them appropriately, now they would have to demonstrate that they had done so – or be financially penalised with a reduction in their income.” This has led to an expansion by millions of the numbers deemed eligible for medication because the cut-off points for initiating drug treatment have been reduced over and over again, so that each level, like cholesterol or blood pressure, has seen lower and lower points set as desirable, with more need for more prescriptions. This enriches not only the individual doctors, but also the drug companies with larger and larger markets for their products. 

The result of this prescribing cascade, dubbed polypharmacy, has led to patients having to take more drugs to treat the side effects of other drugs. One example given is where “cholesterol-lowering statins commonly induce muscular aches and pains, which are then treated with anti-inflammatory drugs which raise blood pressure, warranting treatment with anti-hypertensives.”

The writer of the report feels the problem with this generic approach to “healthy levels” arises from basing it large population studies that fail to account for individual patient needs and lead toresulting increased hospitalizations of seniors because metabolism and drug excretion is reduced so that “15 per cent of acute hospital admissions in this age group are associated with medication-induced problems such as dizziness, falls, confusion and dehydration – four times greater than in younger patients.”