The most precious gift you can give anyone is your time. This week, not for the first time, we put this notion to the test and used our private medical insurance to access healthcare for Team Jones. In doing so it exposes the one thing that the NHS – for all its greatness and all its world leading ways – cannot always give you; time.
Whenever we have accessed private healthcare – and we have several times – we are accessing two priceless ways of making time work for us. We have always been able – as this week – to see a specialist within days not weeks or months and when we have seen said specialist we never felt rushed to meet a 10 minute appointment slot or not having the time to ask all our questions and get the answers we need. We have never accessed private medicine to see better doctors – we see the same doctors who give most of their time to the NHS but they are not able to give their patients the time they want to give them. That is what doctors tell me who work in both the NHS and the independent sector – the reason they like private practice – yes, apart from the money – let’s be honest – is that they get the time, facilities and choices to give patients what is best for them, regardless of budgets and time constraints.
That has always been our experience and was again today. For people who are prone to worry and anxiety – as I am – the ability to see someone quickly who can reassure you is vitally important. I am glad to say that she was able to do that and save me – and the rest of Team Jones- two months – that is what the wait would have been on the NHS to see the same doctor – of worry and concern. Yes, it was for a price. But a price worth paying today and every day.
I believe in the NHS but I also believe in choice. I believe in a thriving private sector. I believe in doing what is best for you and your family as long as it doesn’t damage others. I would love to be able to see the doctors I wanted, when I wanted, for as long as I needed on the NHS but that is not possible. As long as that continues, I would give up most things – make other sacrifices in my life – to keep my private medicine for my family. It buys us peace of mind; it buys us time. As the Czech proverb says; ”Time is the most precious thing you can spend”. I can vouch for that.