THE NHS is in deep trouble. This ‘untouchable’ monster as it now stands, cannot be sustained in its present form indefinitely.
Staggering from crisis to crisis, it is currently staring at a £30bn funding black hole by 2020.
With a projected UK population of 70 million, all having ‘free at the point of use’ access to a diminishing resource, how will it be funded in the future?
Voices on all sides know something has to give, because while demand for health care is inexhaustible, the public’s willingness to pay for it is finite, and already the signs are there.
The falling standards in the NHS cannot now be air-brushed away.
The annual bill for clinical negligence now tops £25m and the NHS has been thrown open to anyone in the world, as long as they can argue they wouldn’t receive ‘free’ treatment at home, costing the taxpayer £500m a year.
These incidents are not accidental. We have allowed ourselves to develop a reputation for ‘health tourism’ to a point where in the not too distant future the NHS will be bankrupt.
A survey of GPs, nurses and so on predicted that within a decade, people will be forced to pay for certain treatments. This would hit the poor.
The American system is no option, so health insurance it may have to be.
The Lefties will scream privatisation by the back door, hands off our sacred NHS.
The original principle should stand, but will taxpayers be prepared to pay even more for an inexhaustible demand with no end on finite resources? The answer is ‘No’.
Brian Johnston, Burmantofts
Time to get rid of Human Rights
I ALWAYS knew Cameron and this Government were crackpots for not getting rid of the human rights law. Now I have been proved correct.
If you never set foot in the UK you can still claim legal aid, says a European judge. People living in this country cannot get legal aid. If you live outside this country it seems you are exempt from these conditions.
It is time to get rid of these human rights laws. It is a stupid situation and the British people shouldn’t have to put up with it. Let’s get rid of this law for good.
Roger Watkinson, Halton
They deserve more than this
IT SURELY is not acceptable that ‘paupers’ funerals’ have to be put in place for deceased servicemen due to their not having any living relatives at the time of their demise.
Having fought for this country and our freedom, due respect needs to be afforded to them, by whatever means.
Our lives were in their hands.
Mavis Harrison, Leeds
Take the branch out of your eye
Councillor Barry Anderson criticises the low turnout of the strike ballots held by public sector and health service unions prior their recent one day strike (YEP, July 15).
As Councillor Anderson was himself elected by only 22 per cent of the electorate, can I therefore assume that he will be resigning his seat forthwith?
I also note from the Leeds City Council website that councillor Anderson is registered as unemployed.
I therefore make a neighbourly suggestion that rather than criticising ordinary working people defending themselves against a vindictive coalition government, the Tory councillor for Adel and Wharfedale would better use his time looking for a job.
Keith Midgley, Leeds
Northern Rail was a shambles
With regard to the letter from Martin Philips (YEP, July 12), I couldn’t agree more. Northern Rail were a complete failure, a shambles and an embarrassment to Yorkshire during Le Grand Depart.
Their meagre efforts were a disaster waiting to happen, however.
In my correspondence with them they have admitted a lack of carriages to cope with the capacity of their ‘customers’ in Yorkshire.
It seems to me that Northern Rail cannot cope with the ordinary, every day commuter runs, let alone a grand occasion like Le Grand Depart.
I hope that Mr Philips isn’t taken in by the Government’s rhetoric and the so-called ‘success’ of their franchise system of running the railways.
Northern Rail have had subsidies that my former employers, good old British Rail, could only dream of, but they have still been a disaster.
Imagine what it will be like next year when the subsidies are cut and our government will also remove nine trains from our other franchise provider TransPennine Express and take these trains down south to Chiltern Railways. Mr Philips says Northern Rail can say au revoir to any chance they had of renewing their franchise.
It’s irrelevant who has the franchise, the Government will ensure cuts, fare increases and even worse service in the future.
The commuters on the York-Leeds-Huddersfield-Manchester line will need to get on their bikes and I would advise anyone planning to attend Gary Verity’s next cycling jamboree, the Tour Of Yorkshire to do the same. The only answer is to end the franchise system and bring back a democratically, publicly owned integrated transport system designed to provide a service, not swell the bank accounts of fat cats.
Kevin Wilson, Cottingley
Why bother with the truth?
I refer to the letter of F Lennon (YEP, July 15) in which they make mention of ‘benefit scroungers’ and ‘parasites’.
If there is one thing I hate in life it is to see the victims of the free market being scapegoated as the cause of all society’s ills.
Why bother with the truth when a caricature will do to support bigotry?
Dave MacFadyen, Crossgates
Relocation idea is simply barmy
THE plan to relocate the city’s tourism centre (YEP, July 15) is totally barmy. The centre is a welcome sight which greets visitors walking through the station. The helpful, smiling staff deal with enquiries as diverse as bus services and the quickest route to the shopping centre.
There is a selection of informative leaflets and a feeling for tourists that they are going to have an enjoyable visit, now that they’ve booked theatre tickets, bus tickets and so on, yhe day is theirs.
Now, the other scenario. The visitors step out of the station to be greeted by the vast amount of traffic in City Square, discovering which route to take to reach the art gallery, again traffic interrupting conversation.
There is about a 10-minute walk on a slight incline, then to a desk under the stairs. This could well be when the visitor decides to cut his losses and go home. The spokeswoman who said Leeds is a vibrant and dynamic city centre sounds more like she wants to ‘dynamite’ the city. Please keep the tourist centre exactly where it is.
O Colley, Oakwood
Made me proud to be British
BELATED congratulations to everyone who turned out for the Tour de France, from Leeds to Sheffield. The weekend was superb, the organisation excellent. It made me proud to be from Yorkshire, and British.
The weather was the icing on the cake.
J Richards, Pontefract