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How to choose a private hospital or clinic

Compare what the hospitals have to offer, how they differ, and what sort of philosophy of care they offer.  The location of the hospital will undoubtedly play an important part in your choice, as will specialist services, depending on the treatment you need. Search the Private Healthcare UK private hospital database to find private hospitals which are within easy travelling distance so that family can visit and you can eliminate any discomfort of long journeys.

If you are based in the South of England or can travel to London for your treatment, then you can explore the healthcare services available in Harley Street, the centre of medical excellence known as "Medical London".  You can visit HarleyStreet.com or use the Harley Street Guide to view the specialists practising in this area of London.

Some factors to consider when comparing private hospitals include:

  • Does the private hospital specialise in the treatment that you require?
  • What are the hospital’s patient satisfaction scores?
  • Does the hospital publish hospital infection rates and return to theatre rates?
  • What quality and accreditation standards does the hospital meet?
  • What is the availability of a high dependency or intensive care unit, should something go wrong.
  • What support services are available for your care after the operation?
  • What happens in terms of costs if complications arise and you need to stay in hospital longer?

The Care Quality Commission now publishes the results of hospital inspections on the web for both NHS and private hospitals:

For cosmetic surgery, you need to identify a hospital or clinic that you feel fully comfortable with.  Find out which professional memberships, training and qualifications the surgeons hold and go to the relevant association’s website to verify that this information is correct.  You should also ask to see some ‘before and after’ pictures and read some of their patient testimonials.

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