In spite of some improvements in health care coverage across the world, hundreds of millions of people still lack adequate access to health care and protection from the costs of illness, disease and injury. Health systems are being commercialised and marketised, resulting in greater inefficiency and inequity. Clinical research and health policy have been captured by corporate actors and bent to serve commercial interests. Prisoners and detainees are subjected to abuse and torture, often with the complicity of health professionals.
Medact does not provide frontline clinical care or humanitarian relief. But it exists to promote a vision of human rights medicine. It works to restore the function of the health system as a foundation for societal well-being and a platform for the expression of ethical behaviour. It acts to restore public interest to the heart of health policy.
Patients Not Passports: Challenging healthcare charging in the NHS is Medact’s briefing paper that examines NHS charging and the introduction of immigration controls in the NHS.
In yet another demonstration of government departments concerning intervention in healthcare provision, a recent report released by Z2K highlights a new practice by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) that could have real impact on health equity. The report...
“As a doctor I find it appalling that my employer could encourage me to provide substandard care for a patient because of their nationality. Recently I saw ‘cost recovery staff’ document in a very sick young female’s notes that staff should “refrain from providing non-urgent treatment because she is chargeable for her care and has not yet paid a deposit”. Patients will suffer. Either through direct clinical neglect, or (more likely) through delayed presentation to health services due to fear of financial ruin or being reported to authorities.”
Join Medact, Docs Not Cops, and Health Professionals for Global Health to find out about the impact of NHS charging regulations on migrants and the role healthcare workers have in improving access to care for all. This event will launch the Patient’s not Passports Toolkit and showcase a variety of speakers who will discuss how the policy may directly contravene the principles of universal healthcare.
“The overseas team have come onto my ward to deliver invoices to a patient’s bedside. I was shocked that they would approach a patient at their most vulnerable. I’ve also heard about pregnant women having their care delayed or booking at the last minute. I dread to think what kind of impact this will be having.”