News & Politics

Socialized Medicine Fail: Watch Nurse Tell Patients in British Emergency Room They Might Wait 13 Hours to See a Doc

Socialized Medicine Fail: Watch Nurse Tell Patients in British Emergency Room They Might Wait 13 Hours to See a Doc

Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) has given the world plenty of examples showing why America should run from socialized medicine, such as soulless, bureaucratic decision-making and long wait times for planned procedures. Now, a shocking new video shows yet another reason: insufficient service for the community, resulting in waits of seven-and-a-half hours and up for emergency room visitors to see a doctor.


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A video that was taken in the Harlow A&E (Accident and Emergency) waiting room, part of the Princess Alexandra hospital NHS trust in Essex, UK, has gone viral. Filmed late Monday afternoon, the footage shows a nurse addressing the people waiting in the crowded room. And what she tells them is the stuff of collectivist nightmares. The Guardian reports:

She tells the crowded room: “Our current wait time for a doctor is seven-and-a-half hours. I will estimate by the time I go home in the morning at 8 o’clock some of you will still be here waiting for a doctor because the waits will get up to 12 or 13 hours.

“There are currently no beds in the trust. We’re trying to make more space if we can but if people are admitted there’s a chance they’ll stay in A&E for the night.

“We will do our best to make you comfortable, we will do our best to look after you, but please don’t expect you will be going direct to a ward because that might not happen.”

The beleaguered nurse also requests that all relatives leave the A&E because they are “running out of space.”

When British Health Secretary Sajid Javid viewed the video, he remarked that it “wasn’t what anyone wanted to see.”

A few days earlier, in an appearance on the news show BBC Breakfast, Javid blamed lengthy wait times on COVID-19:


“Because of the impact of Covid … we know already from our NHS estimates, we think some 11 to 13 million people stayed away from the NHS because of the pandemic.

“Many of those people are coming forward, many of those to A&E, and we’re seeing very high levels of demand. That is a real challenge for the NHS across the system.”

England lifted its coronavirus restrictions in January and issued its “Living with COVID-19” guidance in February. It seems highly unlikely acutely ill people waited nearly four months to seek help.

In the United States, Obamacare remains the law of the land and has been realigning America’s healthcare industry as well as the way Americans get and pay for care. Coverage options dwindle, premiums become less and less affordable, and fewer and fewer people are willing to go through the rigors of becoming a doctor. When Congress changes hands in the next election cycle, let’s hope one of its priorities will be steering the healthcare laws away from the brink of socialized medicine.

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