Invest in publicly run services to secure health and social care

For the first time more than 50% of NHS patients referred for hip and knee replacement are being treated in the private sector. This care is funded by the NHS, but spotlights a growing reliance on the private sector and the failure to build sustainable NHS capacity.

Meanwhile in the care home sector we see the price of such dependence where eight out of ten are run for profit, but many are now closing, pushed under by Covid shocks and the previous funding squeeze.

It is adding to the pressure on NHS hospitals, as patients are stranded unable to be discharged from hospital beds because of a lack of care home places.

The fate of the health sector – still mostly publicly run, and the largely private care sector are locked together, both in peril, for lack of public funding and action around securing enough health and care workers.

For the public, long waits and the impression of a worsening NHS are now leading to increasing numbers of better-off patients opting to pay for their own private care. Public confidence in the NHS is taking a knock.

Full story The Lowdown, 20 October 2021