A 17 year old lad has just completed his "Lifeguard Proficiency" exams and is suddenly faced with an emergency situation. A boy, 5 years his junior is being swept out to sea by rather large, powerful waves; he will most certainly drown. After only 5 days of being certified as a lifeguard this young man fearlessly stormed into the ocean to rescue the young lad. Mission achieved.
The boy was saved. John Clark had a headache, and the 12-year-old was wrapped in a blanket to warm up. Into the ambulance they both went. and taken to hospital for precautionary check ups etc. Clark never gave the matter another thought..... until 2 weeks later when the postman delivered the following:
The emergency room treatment: $449.
The physician's charge: $227.
15-mile ride in the ambulance to Tillamook: $1,907.
The total bill for saving a young man's life? $2,583 Unbelievable!
( 17 year old lifeguard John Clark )
The first question is why was the lifeguard given the bill in the first place? He was doing his job! I assume he was paid a wage for being on hand to save people from drowning so why was he penalised for doing just that?
He was employed for that very reason- to do something - so how the hell could he be charged hospital fees etc?"I had a feeling there would be a bill," Clark said. "But I didn't know how much it would be, and I kind of feel bad for the fact that it's so expensive. But I couldn't just let the kid go -- I had to do something."
The good news is that via "The Columbian" newspaper, a 'fighting fund' was rapidly set up and this bill paid to a very mean spirited Tillamook hospital.
Now just imagine if our NHS starts disintegrating to such an extent that ordinary working people are faced with enormous costs for helping people injured or trapped. How much would Boris Johnson have been charged after being left dangling over London on a wire during a publicity stunt as lord Mayor. It would have to have been his fault, he is the Lord mayor, he was entertaining the crowds, he was employed and being paid! How much would it cost walkers, hill & mountain climbers to get the "Air Mountain Rescue" team out because they were injured, lost or caught out by freak weather? And what about the coastguards and our hundreds of local lifeboats that all cost money? How much is the actual cost of launching one of these craft to rescue people at sea-and then how much is the cost when the 'rescued' are safely back ashore with ambulances at the ready to cart them off to hospital?
Can we see the slippery slope before us yet? Anyone NOT seeing it? then you 'shudda went specsavers mate'!
All of us, Lansley included, partake of some sort of leisure time activity. It may be swimming, sunbathing, climbing up a bloody great mountain, chucking ourselves over a bridge attached to an elastic band, cycling near an Olympic bus, walking in a park, enjoying a round of golf, it is endless and the NHS was set up by Aneurin Bevan in 1948 to cater for ALL PEOPLE - not just those without money, or with an abundance of money, all people to be treated the same! 'Nye' didn't care which of the above past-times you chose to partake of, or even if you dallied in several, he simply wanted a healthcare system whereby everyone had that same opportunity. If we even partially adopt the crazy American system then we will be losing the jewel in our national crown for this country has ALWAYS prided itself on its ability to care for the unwell sections of our society. If Herr Lansley is allowed to destroy our NHS system bit by bit then we will be 'just another nation' that has nothing to offer, no hope and no future. Governments seem to have taken the view that prohibition is the way forward instead of education but what they need to learn is that prohibition leads to antagonism thus more crime and quite possibly civil unrest, whereas education is far cheaper and people will always respect and adhere to knowledge. Tillamook Hospital may be the other side of the world but it is only a short step away from these shores for our politicians are, for the most part, stupid enough to follow in American footsteps - just look at the banking crisis! To charge a lifeguard for doing his paid job is crackers, but then again, just how crackpot is this world rapidly becoming?