The Real NHS

Old Sep 9th 2012, 4:36 pm
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Default The Real NHS

As Bub the Wiser keeps stressing that the forum needs threads that give a more balanced view of the UK, I thought I would start one about the NHS. A thread that includes ALL experiences of the NHS. For people returning I would hope it would be a valuable insight into what they might expect.

For background, lived in the UK 40 years, had two children in hospital, have father with cancer in the UK. One major operation, a child with a lung/heart condition and another child with a minor problem.

I will try to keep it from turning into my life story:-)

Dentist, can't get onto a NHS dentist lists to long. When did for short time unable to get appointments, rubbish treatment as no continuity. Children are still NHS covered at private dentist. Son couldn't get braces on NHS as requirements are very strict. Change happened about 7 years ago before then was on NHS and treatments fine.

Two kids in NHS hospital, one child very ill while carrying, regular scans and monitoring. Birth not enough staff and to busy in hospital. Second, fine but again not enough staff.

DD has recurring minor condition, seen by specialists, full scan done, very happy with treatment.

DS rushed into hospital when 2, spent 4 nights, treatment OK, but cleaners not so good.

Me rushed into hospital major operation, treatment very good, cleaners good, taken care off. Wasn't impressed to find the whole hospital only covered by one doctor at night. Mixed wards, gentleman wandering in night confused looking for his wife, very undignified for him:-(

Dad has cancer, went to Docs, appointment that week, treatment that week and ongoing, happy about treatments.

Local Doctors, perfectly happy with service, appointment waiting times, always that day for kids, nearly always that day for adults or next day. This is seeing any doctor, longer for a named doctor.

Various visits to A&E (2 kids), always happy with service, shortest wait none, longest 45 mins.

This is my experience of the NHS, is current as only left last year.

Can't give experience of US as have not had to visit/treatment as yet.

I personally feel that both systems UK and US are rubbish because UK service needs to be better and US is not available to everyone. But, out of the two I would choose our rubbish service any day as I don't believe that healthcare should be available to only the wealthy.

I hope this is a balance view of the NHS and will help anyone thinking of returning to the UK. If I can help with anything just ask away as long as its not to personal
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Old Sep 9th 2012, 5:05 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Thank you so much, this was very helpful! When you say your children were still NHS covered at private dentist how does that work? Is it just a case of paying out of pocket if the treatment was something not covered by NHS or more expensive than NHS allows? Were you happy with the quality of treatment at the private dentist?

Do children get 6 month dental check ups covered by NHS?

What was your experience with schools in the UK for your children?

Thank you for any info you can give
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Old Sep 9th 2012, 5:27 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Originally Posted by NiHao View Post
When you say your children were still NHS covered at private dentist how does that work?
I thought this is only if an NHS dentist decides stop doing NHS and to do private work only??? And that private dentists do not have to take on NHS children?

Perhaps someone else can confirm?


Originally Posted by NiHao View Post
Do children get 6 month dental check ups covered by NHS?
All NHS patients can get a 6 month dental check-up, if they can get on an NHS dentists books. Children are free and adults pay according the the 3 bands of work.

My dentist takes private and NHS and often runs out of NHS money before the year is up; so NHS people have to wait until the start of the new budget.

You can take insurance out and it is still cheap(ish). Some firms offer free private dentisty for the family, as part of the pay package.
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Old Sep 9th 2012, 5:41 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Originally Posted by NiHao View Post
Thank you so much, this was very helpful! When you say your children were still NHS covered at private dentist how does that work? Is it just a case of paying out of pocket if the treatment was something not covered by NHS or more expensive than NHS allows? Were you happy with the quality of treatment at the private dentist?

Do children get 6 month dental check ups covered by NHS?

What was your experience with schools in the UK for your children?

Thank you for any info you can give
Hi NiHao

Yes the children are still covered at a private dentist, I am sure there are some private dentists that chosen to op out of this but I have used two that are private but accepted kids as NHS. That means the kids pay nothing until they are 18 and don't quote me but I'm not sure if they stay in full time education it maybe free longer. You are right that you pay for kids if you choose to have something not covered by NHS such as coating on you kids teeth. Private dentist costs vary and I paid about £45 with no insurance for a clean and check up. Some private dentists ask for you to get insurance and other don't. I was very happy with my private dentist and there are good NHS dentists as well, but getting on their lists are usually impossible.

Yes the kids get check ups every 6 months on the NHS, adults once a year.

I had two kids in schools in the UK, both 8 and 10, Year 3 (Grade 2) and Year 5 (Grade 4) when we left. DS aged 10 classed as gifted, DD aged 8 learning difficulties.

I have to say there are schools in the UK I wouldn't send my dogs to, but I lived in a small town, had a choice of 4 very good primary schools, very happy with their education/sports and extra activities.

We had started to look at High Schools and in my town we still had Grammer Schools as well as the local High School. Both schools are good schools and people who pass the 11 plus still sometimes choose to go to the High School as they are just as good.

I have to say I am disappointed in the education my DS is getting in the Las Vegas compared to the UK. But I do feel it is a little better for my DD as she gets more help here.

Hope this is of some help
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Old Sep 9th 2012, 5:55 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Hi formula

I don't know the rules regarding private dentists taking on kids as NHS, but I have been to two, one very expensive dentist that still took my kids on as NHS and one cheaper costs that did as well.

I am sure that they don't have to, but choose to.

I can't comment on recent adult NHS as I've not used them regularly over 7 years and the short time I did I would say I wasn't impressed.

But the two private I used, one charged £60 for check up and clean and one charged £45, like any business they charge what the want. I do know that my UK friend here needs something doing to her teeth, but here it would cost her $5000 with no insurance and at home £1500 (approx $2380), so shes waiting till she goes home next year. My private dentist at home offered insurance at £15 a month that discounted treatment by 50%, but again varies massively depending on companies and dentists.

I admit that dentists in the US are better that most at home but costs are beyond what we can pay, its only because my husbands company pays 100% that we can manage. So its probably a case of making sure you find that good dentist in your area and not rely on the NHS when it comes to being an adult.
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Old Sep 9th 2012, 8:50 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

A small observation of mine, and I stress it's just an observation, I don't know if there are facts to back it up.

If you go into a casualty dept. of virtually any NHS hospital between 5.00 p.m. and 7.00 p.m on a Saturday night you'll find the wounded warriors from Saturday afternoons amateur sporting activities, football, rugby etc. I think it's a bonus for social interaction that people can play sport without fear that an injury may cause financial hardship.

Last edited by Bud the Wiser; Sep 9th 2012 at 8:51 pm. Reason: correcting typo.
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Old Sep 9th 2012, 10:29 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Originally Posted by Bud the Wiser View Post
A small observation of mine, and I stress it's just an observation, I don't know if there are facts to back it up.

If you go into a casualty dept. of virtually any NHS hospital between 5.00 p.m. and 7.00 p.m on a Saturday night you'll find the wounded warriors from Saturday afternoons amateur sporting activities, football, rugby etc. I think it's a bonus for social interaction that people can play sport without fear that an injury may cause financial hardship.
I'd have to agree with that.
I have worked in the NHS and Saturday afternoon in the ER can have a lot of sports injuries especially if it's a nice sunny afternoon.
One a good story side. My Sis was a saturday afternoon visitor to the A&E after an accident with her horse, one broken leg, one smashed knee and a lot of Orthopaedic surgery and wonderful care later she was fine for many years, now living in Spain she needs a new knee, no idea when that will happen she has private insurance through her work.
I haven't been a patient in the NHS as far as I can remember. But as a nurse I loved working at the local hospital.
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Old Sep 9th 2012, 10:39 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

I just want to say that I am 25 and went to the dentist here in the US and wanted a bit of work, he said he can only do a little bit of the work and it would be $8,500 and then another couple of grand for a specialist for the things he couldn't do!! I don't care what anyone says, NHS all the way or even Private dentistry in the UK! They rip you off here in everything!
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Old Sep 9th 2012, 11:09 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

We have a saying here in Canada :
If you are a vetinarian or dentist and not a millionaire by the time you are 50 you are doing something wrong!

Saying that, there are some honest dentist here who if they know you do not have insurance will charge you a reasonable rate. The first thing they say to you if you need work is "you need a crown" then when you say you don't have the money, then a "couple of pins and large filling" is the order of the day! Best to get a dentist and vet here by word of mouth

In our old town in UK I noticed that two private practices were offering NHS services which is comforting as we may end up back there!
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Old Sep 10th 2012, 1:19 am
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Default Re: The Real NHS

MITFH
Thanks for the info on dentists and schools, much appreciated!
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Old Sep 10th 2012, 2:25 am
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Originally Posted by feelbritish View Post
We have a saying here in Canada :
If you are a vetinarian or dentist and not a millionaire by the time you are 50 you are doing something wrong!

Saying that, there are some honest dentist here who if they know you do not have insurance will charge you a reasonable rate. The first thing they say to you if you need work is "you need a crown" then when you say you don't have the money, then a "couple of pins and large filling" is the order of the day! Best to get a dentist and vet here by word of mouth

In our old town in UK I noticed that two private practices were offering NHS services which is comforting as we may end up back there!
So true, my friend went to a dentist here in the US just after she left the UK. He recommended alot of work that was really expensive, including having her wisdom teeth out. She had only just had her teeth checked before she had left the UK by a dentist she had been to as a child.

She held off having the work done and on her next visit to the UK popped into see her old dentist who confirmed none of the work needed doing including her perfect wisdom teeth that had never caused her any pain.

My kids have had dealing with a dentist in the US and I've been very happy with him. Different story with the orthodontist, kids recommend to have over $8000 each. Went back to the dentist who actually said one of my children didn't need it because as she grows her teeth will have enough room.

My kids teeth are normal not a mess

Which ever country you are in there will be good and bad dentists and costs will vary. I just wanted to point out that it is really hard to get onto an NHS dentist list. But there are people on them and people can be lucky on their return.
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Old Sep 10th 2012, 7:19 am
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Default Re: The Real NHS

For anyone who is returning, here is a site which you can use to see which dentists are accepting NHS patients http://www.nhs.uk/servicedirectories...ceType=Dentist

As has been discussed, some will only be taking on children, others will accept both adults and children.

We came back to the UK a couple of years ago and had no problem finding an NHS dentist - there were a couple in our area that were accepting patients.
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Old Sep 10th 2012, 7:38 am
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Originally Posted by rebs View Post
We came back to the UK a couple of years ago and had no problem finding an NHS dentist - there were a couple in our area that were accepting patients.
Ditto, both times we've moved in the past 6 yrs we've had no problems finding a NHS dentist. Our current one is in a brand new clinic and great.

And I can't fault the NHS, we've unfortunately had lots of cause to use it over the years and never had an issue. My son is particularly accident prone so we've done several trips to the local A&E since moving here a year ago, and have always been seen pretty quickly. What's really nice is that our hospital has a separate children's A&E with its own entrance and toys, kids tv etc. So for instance, the time we were there at midnight on a Saturday, my 5 yr old son didn't have to see all the drunken eejits with heads split open etc.
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Old Sep 10th 2012, 6:14 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Originally Posted by Bud the Wiser View Post
A small observation of mine, and I stress it's just an observation, I don't know if there are facts to back it up.

If you go into a casualty dept. of virtually any NHS hospital between 5.00 p.m. and 7.00 p.m on a Saturday night you'll find the wounded warriors from Saturday afternoons amateur sporting activities, football, rugby etc. I think it's a bonus for social interaction that people can play sport without fear that an injury may cause financial hardship.
And if you hang around for another 4 or 5 hours, you can say the same thing about poisoning yourself with stupid amounts of booze.
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Old Sep 10th 2012, 6:17 pm
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Default Re: The Real NHS

Originally Posted by dunroving View Post
And if you hang around for another 4 or 5 hours, you can say the same thing about poisoning yourself with stupid amounts of booze.

HAHAHAHAHA Funny because it's true!
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