I don't get the idea of 'choice' in the NHS. I just want my local hospital or whatever department I'm ever sent to, to be good. I don't want to have to choose. They should all be up to a minimum standard.
Plus the NHS is a basket case anyway, MP's know that large central departments have better 'outcomes' (if funded correctly) but will fight to save their small local department because it's popular with voters.
Then there is the massive expansion of PFI's that have crippled so many hospitals.
Firstly, choice is about where you want to go for treatment, especially if your local Hospital does not supply the care you require. For instance, assuming you live in Bedford, your local hospital does not do Cardiothoracic work, therefore if someone in that area needed a heart operation they could choose to either go to Birmingham, or London, or Oxford, or anywhere you feel. The same with any other treatment.
Seconly, where are the NHS going to get the staff needed to cover the 24 hour services that the government are asking certain departments to open? Many services including Theatres are seriously understaffed, and have trouble recruiting, if we had to open more theatres at the weekend then the services would have to be cut during the week, or start recruiting from Romania and Bulgaria in the new year.
Specialist staff in other areas are also in short supply.
We also have toi watch something called NCEPOD (National Confidential Enquiery into Peri-Operative Deaths) which is concerned that over tired surgeons and Anaesthetists are making dangerous mistake, that why the working hours directive aimed at Junior doctors was forced through.
Finally, most NHS Trusts are under increasing inspections from the CQC (Care Quality Commission), and if this, or any, government knee jerk proposals through, no NHS Trusst would have the staff to provide a proper, and efficent service, triggering the wrath of the CQC even if they were providing the cover needed.
A case in point is Maternity services here in East Sussex, we have 3 birthing units, but not enough midwives to cover all the units 24/7/365, so there was a public outcry recently when maternity services were closed at Eastbourne and moved 12 miles down the road to Hastings, the Midwife led birthing unit at Crowborough is also under threat, and is being targeted for a takeover by Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust. Both of these incidents have been investigated by the CQC.