The NHS is at breaking-point due to underfunding.
- More money is needed to face the new challenges of an ageing population and worsening health.
- It is, however, far from the truth that the only correct response is more money. It is also the case that good care can cost less; and there is certainly space for large efficiency savings.
- One response, popular with the public, is to find new ways to treat patients near to their homes, and in them, rather than ferry them to expensive hospitals.
- Very often the services people want to receive are not to be found in hospitals, even if by refusing certain invasive treatments a patient’s life may be shortened. Realising this not only leads to increased patient satisfaction, but to savings that would not have been achieved otherwise.
- There are some powerful ideas that have the potential to transform modern healthcare. But these ideas have barely been tried by the NHS.
- We are confident that the NHS can meet modern challenges by finding greater value from the money it already spends.
- It is time that budget pressure was used as a catalyst to do things differently; to make improvements that, for whatever reason, were avoided in the halcyon days of plenty.
The UK Living Will Registry which has recently launched, is already working to help increase the choice that people have about how, when and where they receive end of life care. The service we provide will become an important link in the overall system that will be needed to enable end-of-life choices to be acted upon.