Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Welcome to the world of managed care

As Britain repeatedly demonstrates, socialized medicine is a great idea that doesn't work:

Hundreds of patients are having to wait longer for treatment at a hospital where non-urgent operations have been cancelled or deferred since the end of January. The freeze was imposed by the Queen Elizabeth Hospital NHS Trust in Woolwich, south-east London, because of 'severe pressure' on the accident department and the need to meet the Government's four-hour accident and emergency waiting target. At a second hospital, Bromley Hospital NHS Trust, in Kent, some operations have also been put back because of the increased demands of urgent cases over the winter. At Woolwich, pressure on the accident department meant that patients faced lengthening delays for treatment that threatened the A&E target. The Government insists that patients should not wait for more than four hours between arriving and being treated, sent home or admitted. Delays were arising because of the hospital's inability to admit emergency cases to the wards. *** The surgery ban at Woolwich, which began on Jan 27, is expected to last until the end of March. The only exceptions are "clinically urgent" cases and those patients for whom a delay would mean that they had been waiting for more than six months at the end of March - another Government waiting list target.