专八人文知识精讲(12) 英国社会

I. Health and Social Services

1. Britain is regarded as a welfare state. Thissystem is funded out of national insurancecontributions and taxation. In Britain the term appliesmainly to the National Health Service (NHS), national insurance and social security.

2. The National Health Service provides for every resident, regardless of income,a full range of medical services. The service was established in the U.K. in 1948.Over 82 per cent of the cost of the health service in Great Britain id funded out ofgeneral taxation. The rest is met from: (1) the NHS element of National Insurancecontributions; (2) charges towards the cost of certain items such as drugs prescribedby family doctors, and general dental treatment; (3) other receipts, including landsales and the proceeds of income generation schemes.

3. There are proportional charges for most types of HNS dental treatment,including examinations. Sight test are free to children. No one is liable to be chargedby the National Health Service for treatment in an accident, emergency or for aninfectious disease. Central government is directly responsible for the NHS, which isadministered by a range of local health authorities and health boards throughout theU.

4. The family health services are those given to patients by doctors, dentists,opticians and pharmacists. In order to obtain the benefits of the NHS a person mustnormally be registered on the list of a general practitioner (GP, sometimes knows asa "family doctor").

5. A full range of hospital services is provided by district general hospital. Thereare also specialist hospital or units for children, people suffering from mental illness,those with learning disabilities, and elderly people, and for the treatment of specificdiseases.

6. The National Health Service is the largest single employer of labour in the U.K.NHS has suffered from underfunding in recent decades, as a result of which manybetter-off people have been turning to private medical health care.

7. Personal social services in Britain assist elderly people, disabled people, peoplewith learning disabilities or mental illness, children, and families facing specialproblems. These statutory service are provided by local government social servicesauthorities.

II. social Security

1. The social security system is designed to secure a basic standard of living forpeople in financial need. Nearly a third of government expenditure is devoted to thesocial security programme which provides financial help for people who are elderly,sick, disabled, unemployed, widowed, bringing up children or on very low incomes.

2. Administration in Great Britain is handled by separate executive agencies ofthe Department of Social Security. In Northern Ireland by the Social Security Agency.

3. contributory social security benefits, it include:( 1) retirement pension; (2)unemployment pension; (3) sickness and invalidity benefit and (4) Maternityallowance and widows's benefits.

4. non-contributory social security benefits, it include: (1) war pensions;(2)industrial injuries disablement benefit;(3) child benefit and (4) family credit.

III. Religion

1. Everyone in Britain has the right to religious freedom with out interferencefrom the community or the State. He may change his religion at will may manifesthis faith in teaching, worship and observance. Except that the Lord Chancellor maybe a Roman Catholic, public offices are open without distinction to members of allchurches or none.

2. Established churches

There are two established church in Britain: in England the church of England and Scotland the Church of Scotland.

3. Church of England is uniquely related to the Crown in that the Sovereign mustbe a member of that Church and as "Defender of the Faith". The Church is alsolinked with the State through the House of loads. The church of England is not freeto change its form of worship, as laid down in the Book of Common Prayer withoutthe consent of Parliament.

4. The government of the Church of Scotland is Presbyterian, that is,government by ministers and elders, all of whom are ordained to office. TheMonarch is normally represented at the general assembly by the Lord HighCommissioner.

5. Unestablished churches

There are include: the Anglican Churches,the Free Churches,the Roman Catholic Church.

IV. Festival and Public Holidays

The Christian festival of the year and Christmas, Easter, and Whit Sunday.