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A private hospital is a hospital owned and operated by an organisation other than the state (which may include for-profit and non-profit companies) and/or which provides care funded other than by the state, for example funded by patients themselves ("self-pay"), by insurers, or by foreign embassies. Private hospitals are a common part of the majority of healthcare systems around the world (for example including the United States of America, London, France, Germany, and Australia).
The term is mainly used in the United Kingdom where private hospitals are distinguished from the far more prevalent National Health Service (NHS) institutions. However, many National Health Service hospitals provide some privately funded care in Private Patient Units (PPUs) or less formally, and to that extent are included as private hospitals for competition law purposes. As at December 2018, there were an estimated 556 hospitals with over 9,000 beds providing privately funded care in the UK, in addition to many more private clinics providing outpatient services. Around 812,000 privately funded admissions occurred in 2017, comprising same-day treatment ("day-case") or overnight stays ("inpatient"). Of these, 714,000 took place in independent hospitals, and 97,000 in NHS facilities. Additionally, some 546,000 NHS-funded admissions were conducted at independent (private) hospitals. Privately funded care, and private hospitals, are most prevalent in London and the South East of England. In 1979 there were about 4,000 beds in UK private hospitals
According to the 2014 American Hospital Association Annual Survey, there are 5,686 hospitals in the United States. Of that total, 2,904 are public hospitals, and 1,060 are private. There are a total of 795,603 staffed beds in public hospitals and 118,910 staffed beds in private hospitals. Public hospitals had about 33.6 million admissions annually while private hospitals had about 1.8 million admissions annually.
Public hospitals had about 33.6 million admissions annually while private hospitals had about 1.8 million admissions annually. That being said, the sheer outnumbering of private hospitals narrows down your options and more so in cases of emergencies. The hospital around the corner is most likely a public one, so they are more readily accessible.
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