Sunday Mirror - - FRONT PAGE -

Yes­ter­day was my wed­ding an­niver­sary and this year I’m away at the Cli­mate Change ne­go­ti­a­tions in Bonn.

I gave the card to Pauline be­fore I left and promised din­ner when I get back.

Try­ing to save the world from global warm­ing doesn’t re­ally work as an ex­cuse for your wife when you’re miss­ing your an­niver­sary. So this Re­mem­brance Sun­day, I’ll also be re­mem­ber­ing the bril­liant woman and mother who has stood by my side for more than 50 years.

Say­ing “sorry, love” might be po­lit­i­cally in­cor­rect... but I am, Pauline. 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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