Human Exceptionalism

NHS Meltdown: Spending Doubles for Bureaucracy

It would be one thing if the NHS bureaucrats were delivering improved care. But for years now, under the general heading “NHS Meltdown,” I have chronicled failure after sometimes deadly failure of the socialized medical service to the people of the UK. But that hasn’t stopped spending for centralized controllers from shooting through the stratosphere. From the story:

Government spending on central bureaucracy in the health service has more than doubled in five years, research has found.

Opposition politicians said the figures demonstrated that the NHS had become a “bureaucratic black hole” under Labour, with money diverted away from the front line to pay an increasing army of administrators.

And get this!

The report found that while staff numbers rose by 18 per cent in five years, the amount spent on them rose by 48 per cent. The rise in the number of administrators outstripped the rise in numbers of doctors and nurses.

Ai, yi, yi: If half of this is true–and the NHS disputes–centralized control is clearly not the way to go. And certainly, we don’t want utilitarian bioethicists calling the shots as to who gets care and what procedures are or are not covered–as happens in the UK with the Orwellian named National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). Alas, there are reports that the foundations for just such a committee have already been laid here in the USA–and they would apply to both public and private health care. The expected denials have also been filed.

I am told by sources closely connected to Big Time Washington DC to expect a law requiring universal coverage to pass this year. The red lights are blinking like mad and the sirens are blaring about what kind of system we should work hard to avoid. Then there are the intractable issues of whether to include abortion in basic coverage, illegal aliens, mental health, etc. And make no mistake: Futile Care Theory will be part of this mess.

If mandatory universal coverage gets pushed this year, and it is unlikely to be next year because of the elections, it is going to be an A # 1 political conflagration.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

The Great Misdirection

The House Democrats are frustrated, very frustrated. They’ve gotten themselves entangled in procedural disputes with the Trump administration that no one particularly cares about and that might be litigated for a very long time. A Washington Post report over the weekend spelled out how stymied Democrats ... Read More

Australia’s Voters Reject Leftist Ideas

Hell hath no fury greater than left-wingers who lose an election in a surprise upset. Think Brexit in 2016. Think Trump’s victory the same year. Now add Australia. Conservative prime minister Scott Morrison shocked pollsters and pundits alike with his victory on Saturday, and the reaction has been brutal ... Read More
NR Webathon

We’ve Had Bill Barr’s Back

One of the more dismaying features of the national political debate lately is how casually and cynically Attorney General Bill Barr has been smeared. He is routinely compared to Roy Cohn on a cable-TV program that prides itself on assembling the most thoughtful and plugged-in political analysts and ... Read More
Film & TV

Game of Thrones: A Father’s Legacy Endures

Warning! If you don't want to read any spoilers from last night's series finale of Game of Thrones, stop reading. Right now. There is a lot to unpack about the Thrones finale, and I fully understand many of the criticisms I read on Twitter and elsewhere. Yes, the show was compressed. Yes, there were moments ... Read More

The Merit of Merit-Based Immigration

Having chain-migrated his way into the White House and a little bit of political power, Donald Trump’s son-in-law is shopping around an immigration plan. And if you can get past the hilarious juxtaposition of the words “merit-based” and “Jared Kushner,” it’s a pretty good one. As things stand, the ... Read More