President Trump recently “slammed” socialized medicine on Twitter.
He was referring to a massive “NHS in Crisis: Fix It Now” protest that occurred on Feb. 3 in London.
As the British might say, the president’s analysis is “spot on.” The United Kingdom’s single-payer system is in turmoil. It’d be foolish to import that failed model.
The NHS has rationed care for decades. But wait times and delays have gotten markedly worse in recent months. The NHS recently canceled 55,000 non-urgent operations in order to cope with heightened demand during the winter flu season. Some hospitals have also canceled urgent procedures for patients with conditions like cancer and heart disease.
Last month, nearly 15 percent of emergency-room patients had to wait more than four hours to be seen by a physician. The conditions are so bad in U.K. hospitals that, in a letter to the nation’s government, 68 British emergency room physicians recently complained about patients “dying prematurely in corridors” as a result of overcrowding.
To call this situation “universal healthcare,” as single-payer defenders always do, is simply absurd. And this abysmal level of care is the reason thousands of U.K. residents took to the streets in protest.
To be sure, many of these protesters were demanding more generous funding for their country’s government-run healthcare scheme. Unfortunately, no amount of money can fix a system in which government bureaucrats, and not markets, determine how to distribute healthcare resources.
It’s hard to fathom how Democrats can look at Britain’s healthcare mess and still advocate for a single-payer overhaul.