Intended for healthcare professionals


Private healthcare must improve its transparency, quality, and cost, just like the NHS, says Bupa leader

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: (Published 28 March 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f2057
  1. Ingrid Torjesen
  1. 1London

The private healthcare sector must improve the quality of its services, cut its costs, and increase transparency to demonstrate value to consumers if it is to thrive, the leader of the UK’s largest independent healthcare organisation has warned.

Damien Marmion, managing director of Bupa’s UK health insurance business, told a meeting with the think tank Reform in London on Wednesday that the private sector had been complacent for too long—believing that there would always be a demand for a private service to complement what was available on the NHS, whatever the cost to the consumer.

Unless the private sector providers collaborated to change, private healthcare would become “a luxury for the very few,” he warned. “In the past five years over 700 000 consumers have voted with their wallets and left the market. And there …

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