What are Personal Health Budgets?
I have long been a firm believer that controlling the treatment of disease is crucial for a patient to affect a cure from disease. It appears that Care and Support Minister Norman Lamb is of a similar opinion, as he looks to roll out Personal Health Budgets across the UK. A Personal Health Budget is an amount of money given to a patient so that they may choose a treatment plan suitable to their own needs and beliefs, which may include both Western Clinicians and Complementary Health providers, such as acupuncturists.
Are they going to be rolled out nationwide?
Personal Health Budgets have been piloted for the last 3 years and have been proven to improve the quality of patients life, save on NHS costs and save on the amount of time patients spend in hospital.
The NHS estimate that 56,000 patients will be in control of their healthcare by April 2014, initially targeting the most needy population, chronically and seriously ill patients. To me this seems a positive step forward in health care; putting the patient in the driving seat. For more information see personal health budgets
Edited to add: Unfortunately Personal Health Budgets are only currently available in England. Fingers crossed they start rolling them out across Wales.