Yesterday, I took myself and my two children off for our six monthly dental check ups. Thanks to the NHS, and the free dental care to which my children are entitled as well as the subsidised dental care for myself, I didn’t have to think twice about whether to attend my bi-annual checkup. We were all checked and pronounced to have wonderful teeth (thanks, probably, to previous preventative dental treatment and effective teaching of good dental hygiene). I had to have a short scale and polish, but other than that I had nothing wrong. I paid a grand total of £12 (19.80 USD, according to Google) for my check up and the cleaning. That, I can manage twice a year!
I am disgusted by the right wing outbursts I’ve been hearing about (mainly in America, but we do have some idiots here as well) who are condemning the NHS as ‘evil’ and ‘Orwellian’. We’re better off now, but a couple of years back I know that I would have had to think long and hard about whether I could justify paying for health insurance, had I lived in a society that didn’t provide healthcare for me and mine. And dental appointments, unless there was an emergency and lots of pain, would have completely gone out of the window. And so a significant part of my preventative healthcare would have been ignored.
As my mother has said, a very long time has been spent in persuading people to take part in preventative healthcare such as smear tests, post natal appointments, well woman and well man clinics, and a lot of this progress would be lost if people had to pay for medical treatment when they were, to all intents and purposes, not visibly ill. But I digress.
Why should poorer people in America have to rely on charitable dentists treating people out of the goodness of their hearts and in their free time? I was reading on the American Dental Association’s website about so-called ‘Missions of Mercy’ where volunteering dentists set up temporary dental hospitals to treat those who otherwise couldn’t hope to afford it. And this is supposed to be the greatest nation in the world? It sounds more like something you’d expect to find in a third world country to me.
Don’t forget to enter my giveaway, open to the end of August