NHS Spends £162million Yearly To Treat Ghost Patients
As per the latest Department of Health report, there are 55million patients registered with GPs and only 52.5million are currently living in Britain. This means the NHS is paying doctors to look after 2.5million patients, who never existed in real life.
The NHS pays an average of £65 for each patient and hardly bothers to assess the records to check whether the patients have been regularly visiting GPS or not. The Audit Commission was the first one to indicate about the matter.
The Audit Commission report revealed that the NHS pays for 95,000 ghost patients, who were once registered with GPS. However, neither the NHS bothered to check the records nor GPs made an effort to reveal the truth and a lot of money continued to go waste.
The current report by the Department of Health is the one, which has put real picture in front of general public and authorities. There are not 95, 000 ghost patients, but 2.5 million patients. These patients are the ones, who once registered themselves to GPs, but then shifted their homes or have left the country or died some 40 years ago.
Cost of treating these ghost patients is around about £162million a year, said Katherine Murphy, who is chief executive of the Patients Association. Murphy said that it is wrong that such a big amount was being wasted to treat patients, who only existed in GPs register.
Health minister Lord Howe, said, “The NHS needs to make the best use of the funds it has available and avoid giving GPs extra income for patients who have moved away or died. Identifying ‘ghost patients’ will ensure that practices are fairly funded only for the patients”.
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