Social Aspects of Health

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Health Studies Social Aspects of Health HEA1181: 2009 . Mark- 65% Discuss the structural changes of the NHS April 2008 The National Health Service (NHS) has supplied free healthcare services in Britain since 1948. During this time the costs of this service have increased dramatically. This has provoked many changes in the structure and organisation of the service. The government attempts to improve the efficiency of the service which have bought about advantages and disadvantages alike. (Clayton,J. 1998) The NHS was established in Britain in 1948 after the NHS act of 1946. It was intended to be universalistic and free for all to use. The service was aiming to be comprehensive in the sense that it would cover all aspects of healthcare. (Moon & Gillespie, 1995:147) Before the NHS the majority of people were not entitled to free healthcare. The 1911 Health Insurance Act provided insurance for GP services for working people but not heir dependents. (Clayton, 1998:197) Others services were provided in workhouses and by voluntary institutions. The friendly societies helped with medical benefit and payment for GP services to their own paid up members. These services were very limited. (Moon & Gillespie, 1995:149). It was the Second World War that prompted the formulation of the NHS. The unity and realisation of shared predicament encouraged a desire for a different social order where unemployment would be reduced, welfare provisions would be more adequate and inequalities be reduced. The Beveridge report reflected these desires and set out proposals for a welfare state. (Busfield, 2000:132) It was Aneurin Bevan health secretary for labour at this time who opened Park Hospital in Manchester and started the ambitious plan to bring healthcare for all. This healthcare for all is to be funded by taxation. (NHS, 2008:1)
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