Just once can we celebrate the NHS and not put it down?

As we wind down the political theatre that is Westminster and as the MP’s go on their well earned hols (no doubt dreaming of what they will do with their extra cash) we are left to ponder what the autumn will bring.


The spring/ early summer had its fair share of madness and drama (no doubt a result of the high temps) with Labour and the Tories slogging it out in the house over the NHS; Labour slogging it out with the unions and the liberals wondering why they are being left out.


Then we have u turns over ciggies, booze; grandstanding over immigration, the conflict in Syria, the NHS to name but a few.


Some readers may see a common theme developing as I list the key issues. Yep, the NHS has consistently been in the news and on the political agenda for some time; but unfortunately not in a good way.


We have had the Francis report, the Keogh report, the crisis looming in A and E, the future of the 111 service, the problems of health care in Wales and questions by select committees over who is actually responsible for what in the NHS. This is despite the statement from Jeremy Hunt that ‘the buck stops with me.’  [Now this is odd, as I do have a recollection that the new health arrangements were designed to distance the politicians from decision making!]


If you are a visitor from abroad and turned on your telly in your hotel room and heard the news  you could be forgiven for praying that you did not get sick during your vacation.


But we all know that there is a gulf between what we hear and see and reality. NHS staff still work tirelessly despite cuts to budgets, increasing workloads and threats to job security. Patients still value the NHS and so do we.  And despite the political and journalistic rhetoric we still treat patients and diagnose their illness. Despite what we see in the news and read in the paper and on twitter feeds, we still treat them with respect and we still keep them safe.


It would be nice to see, just once, a story that is used by the media, politicians and others to show the real worth of the NHS and why we should not see this service as a political football but something that is worth keeping and supporting and that  any failures are an exception and not the norm.


Just once can we celebrate the NHS and not put it down or dissect its innards to gain column inches or political capital.


Whether we work in the NHS or we work for the NHS we know that it is a service that we cannot afford to lose because once it is gone we will never see it return.


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