Your cataracts would have been treated in a timely fashion for their severity in the public system, as your wife's kidney issues. Triage is a vital and necessary part of every medical system in order to most efficiently use medical resources.
My wife had a burst appendix and she went into surgery seven minutes after hitting the casualty ward. I had torn rotator cuffs and waited one week for a specialist appointment, one month for an MRI and three months for successful corrective surgery. Nothing about that was surprising, nor worth worrying about.
I also ruptured a bicep tendon and saw a doctor in one day, consulted with a surgeon within two hours, and it was determined (correctly) that it was not worth an operation.
None of these incidents invoked my private medical insurance, nor my desire to spend my own money, despite the urgings of various providers.
What part of you or your wife's treatment would have benefited by having instantaneous surgery/intervention? Other than your comfort or satisfaction with your taxation scheme?