Independent Sector NHS Capacity
In an attempt to bring some balance to the debate about NHS capacity and waiting times the HSJ this week carried an article in association with BMI Healthcare on the capability and capacity there is available. Patient Choice is only mentioned as an aside referring to the “rising numbers of patients are choosing independent providers for their NHS treatment”.
More needs to be done to make the waiting time experience transparent to the public and patients alike. Data is released every month from Choose and Book detailing the number of days wait for every single service offered but not used by the NHS.
NHS Choices no longer provides any waiting time data yet vast amounts of 18 week data is produced by all providers. Next week we will start running a regular article highlighting the detailed and useful waiting time data the NHS seems not to want patients to see.
The NHS Partners Network which represents the Independent Sector needs to raise the profile to the public. The next five years provides a real opportunity for the public to realise the Independent Sector is as much a part of the NHS as any NHS Trust.
Jan Thomas, Commercial Director for BMI Healthcare points out, paying or NHS patients all receive exactly the same clinical care and they have the capability to deliver more than standard elective care.