Monday, November 26, 2007

NHS at 60 – faltering progress on reform

The Economist has made content from its crystal ball gazing The World in 2008 available on the internet. It’s worth a look.

There is a fairly depressing prognosis for the NHS as it reaches the age of 60. The article notes that Gordon Brown lacks the enthusiasm for introducing the market forces of competition among health care providers. The article concludes:

It is hard for the public to feel confident about how Labour is handling the NHS when its staff are so dissatisfied. And one of their biggest gripes has been the threat of private health-care groups moving in on their territory. But there will be a long-term price to pay. For it is exactly that threat which has the potential to unleash real change in the NHS, as Mr Blair belatedly realised. His vision of turning the NHS into a publicly funded health-care market may have run into difficulties, but that reflected the resistance of the vested interests of its staff as well as ministerial incompetence. Under Mr Brown and his health secretary, Alan Johnson, genuine progress in transforming the NHS looks set to falter in 2008.


Ned Swing said...

Well, better NHS than privatised health care. And better yet, workers control of industry. Maybe you're not advocating privatisation, but if so - wtf?! Neoliberalism is an anti-working class offensive.

Bob Deed said...

I am all for the NHS. And I am enthusiastic for social enterprises accountable to their employees (and their patients and communities). I'm not advocating privatisation - but I think a mixed economy in NHS provision can expand capacity and give patients more choice and power.