Tax the NHS back to life

Sunday Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - News -

When some­one runs an or­gan­i­sa­tion into the ground, the boss usu­ally gets sacked. But the Tories keep them in the job.

Health Sec­re­tary Jeremy Hunt gen­uinely be­lieves the NHS is bet­ter and safer. Tell that to the 45,000 patients wait­ing more than four hours on trol­leys.

Or the four mil­lion on wait­ing lists, the nurses at food­banks and the chiefs who say staffing lev­els are so un­safe patients will die.

Even Theresa May ac­cepts that men­tal health care and so­cial care are in cri­sis. But she can’t ac­cept that it’s down to mas­sive Tory un­der­in­vest­ment.

The Con­ser­va­tives spent £3bil­lion on a top-down re­or­gan­i­sa­tion of the NHS to make it eas­ier for pri­vate sec­tor sup­pli­ers to get con­tracts. They


Brown tells in his new book how he thought he struck a deal with Tony Blair for him to stand down as PM in the mid­dle of his sec­ond term. I used to be their mar­riage coun­sel­lor. In one meet­ing I gave Tony a smaller chair. He said: “Don’t worry, I’m used to Gor­don look­ing down on


said it was for ef­fi­ciency. It was pure ide­ol­ogy.

When Nye Be­van launched Labour’s NHS in 1947 he promised a health­care sys­tem “based upon need and not the abil­ity to pay”. Hunt has changed that to treat­ment “free at the point of use”... if you’re pre­pared to wait up to 44 months for it.

This week the Depart­ment of Health ad­mit­ted that we have a short­age of 50,000 doctors and nurses. The growth of the pri­vate health ser­vice has led to a mas­sive in­crease in firms’ prof­its from des­per­ate patients.

Or they queue jump by pay­ing for a pri­vate con­sul­ta­tion and a fast-track to NHS treat­ment.

And with NHS chief ex­ec­u­tive Si­mon Stevens say­ing we need an ex­tra £4bil­lion to avoid hav­ing a mil­lion more peo­ple on wait­ing lists, the only way to solve it is to raise more tax. An ex­tra penny on Na­tional In­surance would be a price worth pay­ing to help get our NHS off life sup­port.

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