7th March 2010

Lots of UK election sound-bites afoot about much-needed changes, particularly in education and health. Good! Generations of UK schoolchildren have been short-changed. The brain must be trained to think independently before introducing PCs, calculators and more advanced education. Bevan's original postwar NHS ideal has collapsed due to too-many people chasing ever-increasing health treatments and cost-driven drugs. Result: blow-out.
French schoolchildren have always followed a traditional regime, primary children attending 6h p.d., 4 days p.w.
French healthcare is rightly lauded as the best health system in the world, but I doubt if the UK would ever accept the switch from free care to one based on regulated payments and refunds. Besides, illegal immigrants wouldn't like the automatic id checks via the health cards! A new French innovation is a website like http://www.icalin.sante.gouv.fr/ where results on 5 key indicators, superbugs, illness prevention, post-operative infections, antibiotic use, post-operative deaths, can be checked hospital by hospital.
And my experience? In our French village I see that even primary children greet me politely in English in the street, and that hospital patients return home praising their treatment. Enough said. And Him indoors: he tells the doctor he has a low pain threshhold, so the doctor says the next procedure will hurt a bit....here's the bill!

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