"The NHS will last as long as there are folk left with the faith to fight for it"
Aneurin Bevan

Friday, 30 December 2011

In case there is any doubt...

In 1946 the government issued a white paper describing the new NHS (Cmd 6761). The document starts with these paragraphs:
The Bill provides for the establishment of a comprehensive health service in England and Wales. A further Bill to provide for Scotland will be introduced later.
All the service, or any part of it, is to be available to everyone in England and Wales. The Bill imposes no limitation on availability – eg,. limitations on financial means, age, sex, employment or vocation, area of residence or insurance qualification.
Right at the very beginning of our NHS there was a pledge to provide a service that was comprehensive and universal; available to all regardless of income or location. These principles are precious yet vulnerable. Reforms over the last two decades have chipped away at these principles and the final push to abolish them takes the form of the Coalition government's Health and Social Care Bill.


  1. We can't use the 1946 government's ideas to justify a universal health service today.

    Fortunately, over the last 60 years, a universal health service has become all the more necessary and desirable. There are plenty of contemporary arguments against recent reforms.

  2. I can I'm disabled but with changes in society of course many firms now offer health care, and many insurance companies offer cheaper prices they we pay through NI but would I fight for the NHS to my last breath, but would others, would labour I doubt it.