New research reveals that the majority believes that doctors who carry out private work should be expected to repay the public funds used to train them. The NHS spends over £200,000 training each doctor.
In a study for Benenden Healthcare Society, 57% stated that if a doctor trained by the NHS goes on to treat patients privately, they should have to pay back at least some of the cost of their training. A third said that doctors should not have to pay back their training costs, as long as they continued to do their fair share of NHS work.
When asked whether doctors should combine public and private work at all, 76% believe that doctors employed by the NHS should be allowed to see private patients in addition to their NHS role. However, 69% believe that the profits doctors make from private work should be regulated, while 21% feel that doctors should be able to charge whatever rates they choose. 6% say that doctors should not be able to make any profit from private work.