Healthcare 113

I have a post on the political class’s frenetic attempts to criminalise dissent nearly finished, which I hope will be up tonight.

But as a lifelong supporter of the NHS, I wanted to share with you this.

I went to a village community health centre in Greece, feeling pretty rotten. I had to wait outside for the results of a covid test. Once cleared I was in and saw the doctor immediately, the Greek equivalent of a GP. He did the routine checks then took an ECG, and then took an X ray – none of this with an appointment and with no need to go off to a hospital. After an hour I was out again, with a prescription for four different drugs including antibiotics, a diagnosis of bronchitis and sinusitis, and firm orders to go to bed (which I did).

In the NHS I would have had to plead for a receptionist at all for an appointment to see a GP, and would have had to go to a hospital for the X-Ray and ECG. Then they would have probably decided to wait a week before giving antibiotics.

The Greek system was simply massively, massively a faster, more efficient and better experience. It was entirely free, except for 38 euros for the four prescriptions.

That’s it.


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113 thoughts on “Healthcare

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  • Brian Sides

    You might think if you were injured in work and were off sick you had a doctors sick note (called a fit note)
    Your employer had paid a company to assess your health and he had written and signed a report saying you were not fit for work and there were no adjustments or modifications that would allow you to return to work.
    After your statuary sick pay was exhausted you would be entitled to employment sick allowance.
    There is a benefit called PIP personal independence payment if you are disabled or have restricted movement.
    The New ESA (employment support allowance) is not means tested but the way the DWP (department and work pension implements ESA makes it very hard to get this benefit. You will be sent a questionnaire followed by a phone call where you will be asked questions. Then you will get your assessment in the post .
    To be entitled to ESA you have to score 15 there are just 17 questions and each scores one point.
    So you have to not be able to do at least 15 of the questions. If you can do 3 or more of the questions then you are not entitled to ESA. But the questions are so low ball that anyone that is not seriously disabled answering the questions honestly would not score 15.
    An example of some of the questions .
    Q ‘You can usually stay in one place (either standing or sitting for more that an hour without having yo move away. ‘ In other words you can sit down
    Q ‘You can pick up and move objects such as an empty card board box or a carton of liquid’
    Q ‘You can convey a simple message to a stranger’ in other words you can talk
    Q ‘You can understand simple messages from a stranger’ on other words you can hear
    Q ‘Your vision doesn’t prevent you from finding your way around familiar and unfamiliar places’ In other words you can see.
    Q ‘You can learn how to do new tasks’
    Q’ You can deal with people you don’t now’
    Q ‘You are aware of everyday dangers and can keep yourself safe’
    Q ‘You can usually manage to begin and finish daily tasks’
    Q ‘You can cope with small unexpected changes to your daily routine’

    Remember if you can do 3 or more of these tasks the DWP think that you are fit for what they term LCW (limited capacity work) so are not entitled to ESA
    According to a DWP report they reject 75% of claims (these probably means people lie when answering the questions)
    You can take your claim to appeal but a lot of people seeing they have scored zero points don’t bother.
    But you will normally get ESA paid while the appeal is pending this can take many months.
    According to DWP, some 40% of appeals overturn the refusal and allow ESA to be paid.
    Also if you are in a work group you can only get ESA for 365 weeks. But you can then make a new claim and start the process over again.

    I don’t think the DWP are implementing the Employment Support Allowance in a reasonable or correct way.
    If you are injured but not severely disabled you would still be able to do most of things asked.

  • pete

    Good post, compare the EEC forecast for Greece: with the forecast for the UK after the years of conservative rule: and then try to tell me our economy is not a basket case. Not that Labour will do any better given that they seem not to want to change anything for fear of upsetting their sponsors.

  • tonyopmoc

    My experience of the NHS

    Wed 26th July 2023. Sinéad O’Connor died. I was very upset and drank too much alcohol slightly sick.
    Fri 28th July 2023. I suddenly had barely enough strength to get dressed and walk downstairs. 10:00am wife dialled 999. 10:30am Two paramedics arrived. 11:15am Ambulance arrived. Ambulance man phoned ahead – probable case of SEPSIS – URGENT

    Midday On Antibiotic Drip – and for the next 3 weeks

    I pleaded to go home – eventually they let me, whilst lending me the essential kit, as I couldn’t walk more than one step. I knew my wife would nurse me back to health, as I did for her when she got run over by a car a few years earlier.

    SEPSIS often misdaignosed as Flu causes one in five deaths worldwide each year. If identified and treated very quickly with antibiotics it can result in full recovery

  • Ian Hickinbottom

    I’ve just returned from Cuba, with similar story.
    A member of our group fell and badly cut his knee. The hotel doctor came out to him, patched him up and checked vitals. Then organised stitches at medical centre and accompanied him. Okay it cost €120, but it was efficient and completed in an hour or so, including the time for doctor to attend.

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