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    • CommentTimeMar 22nd 2010
    Obama's healthcare thing passed here in the States. One of my facebook friends said that now it's going to take "months to see a doctor like it does in England." I'm not crazy about parts of this healthcare plan but tell me British Angels, does it really take that long to see a doc because the NHS?
    • CommentTimeMar 23rd 2010
    It's not something I've had to do for a long time but I think it can be quite difficult. It probably depends on where you are in the country. For example there's a surgery in my village but it's only open part-time. Towns often have bigger health centres. I would guess that your friend is referring to the time taken to see a hospital doctor, which can be months.
    Seeing your local GP in England is easy. Make an appointment and you'll be seen in a few days. If it's a real emergency then you should be seen straight away. Like Alison says, if you need an operation in hospital then there is a waiting list and it could be months - depends on the seriousness of your condition. But remember this is a free service (well, we pay through our tax) and if you want immediate care then there are private Doctors where you pay for the service. So there is choice. The main thing is, for people who can't afford private care/health insurance premiums there is a great free health service available.
    Here in Japan, while there are jokes about 'waiting for a few hours yet only having the doc see you for a little bit', going to the doctors is not that hard. I had some sort of eye disease (I don't know how to say it in English---my eyes got really red and crusty stuff were on my eyes) once, and I had to wait for a few hours (it was very busy that day, it normally wouldn't take that long) and then the doctor examined my eyes, gave me some special eyedrops for the condition, told me to stay home from university as it could spread to other people. I only had to pay 30% of the price of the eyedrops + a small examination fee.
    It's not free where in my country; you do pay an amount of money every month (it gets deducted from your salary) like any other insurance, and you only pay 30% of the fee out of pocket. So if a medical treatment is technically worth x-amount of money, you would only pay 30% out of pocket. Children, and elderly people pay less, and poorer people who are on welfare don't have to pay anything (they get medical care for free).
    You can also go to any doctor you want to as well.
    So our universal health care would be different than other countries.
    Just remember, not every country's health care system is the same.
    Not every universal health care/insurance system is the same, so I wouldn't trust scare tactics saying 'If there's universal health care, this will happen' type stuff.

    Whatever happens, I sincerely wish the best to the Americans that they and their politicians make the choices that will benefit their people and their health in the long run.
    I'm not crazy about this plan....what i'm most worried about is paying high taxes for this addition i think that it will open a black market for private medical care for those who have the money to afford higher health care...we just have to wait and see what will come of this reform....i read today about some states appealing against it in court. :face-plain:
    • CommentTimeApr 6th 2010
    young, it sounds like you had what we call "pink eye". Not a fun thing to get!

    I've waited a long time to see doctors myself right now. I'll be interested to see how much of it actually happens. It seems as if sometimes things get voted in but then they get changed or argued.