How do we save a public institution that relies on being free at the point of use?
The NHS was founded by the late great ‘Nye Bevan’ on 5th July 1948. The purpose was to provide free health care to everyone at any time. Rich & poor. Rightly so too, everyone who pays into it via the taxation system deserves to access it equally. Those who don’t pay taxes ? The ones who are most likely vulnerable, in need of support (counselling) & probably just an ear to speak in too. It’s their health service too.
We have two ears don’t we? Let’s spare one for them and hear them out. Hear their inspirational battles. These are the people who it was designed to help the most, and they are being failed more often than not instead!
Can we really begrudge them accessing it too ! Somebody who is in dire straights and doesn’t have a lot going for them in the present moment can not be denied it. I’m sorry but the NHS belongs to no individual. It belongs to our scuppered isle. The United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland.
Our union! For now at least. Some may democratically choose to break away. Change, voted for by the people, for the people. Evolution.
When the Labour movement created the essential masterpiece that we know and love and proudly call OUR NHS, the objective was clear. Help the public heal. The 1940s must have been a turbulent period for my predecessors. Some of that generation probably lived through two world wars and finally had an opportunity to move on. The hailed ‘Sir Winston Churchill’ was voted out.
He served his purpose. He contributed to the worldwide prevention of a Nazi dictatorship! How different the world would be if Hitler succeeded I can not tell you.
The hailed leader was voted out and eventually commemorated. Clement Attlee and Labour swept in. A new dawn. Change. Evolution. Arguably by a landslide. It was a decisive and definitive victory. For the people. Through democracy. Something the west should take pride in. Our Democracy.
I am thankful for the conservative Sir Winston, he too had many many faults, which I am not educated enough to express at this moment. I feel he was the right leader at the right time. If my memory serves me right the labour policy at the time was to agree to a surrender. Everyone was tired of the war. It ended. It had too.
Why did the hailed leader lose so many seats and Clement Attlee make so many gains? To be honest they worked together during the war. Turbulent at times I assume but a coalition none the less.
Left and right working together, with Sir Winston having the controlling voice. He was still deselected though in 1945. The first election since the final war. 393 seats for Labour & 197 for The Conservatives. A difference of 196 seats to be precise, that’s around 50% !
Why? Clement Attlee (I’m referring to him as this as I don’t think he was honoured in the same light as Sir Churchill?).
Change. Evolution. The country needed to move on from the war and build back better. Social reform was the name and the policies? OUR GAIN!
The word heal has many connotations. I can only assume that in 1948 the human brain was wired differently (nature and evolution, of course, has changed this). The NHS was constructed to physically heal people.
Anything in your head at the time was dealt with through pulling your shoulders back and putting on a stiff upper lip. For men anyway.
Back then our society was heavily dominated by masculinity. Men in suits with all the top jobs, making all the tough decisions. Women were deemed a lot weaker, some of them may have felt oppressed. Nowadays femininity has evolved and gave us the gift of strong independent women. Do we need a woman in the house again ? You know the house ? You know the address anyway. 10 Downing Street.
So…. How do we save OUR NHS ? Two sayings used by our only two female leaders “There isn’t a magic money tree”. I’m referring to the most recent Theresa May & the divisive Margaret Thatcher. I sense this country went through a lot of pain back then. I weren’t around in the 1980s but I know a lot of people who grew up in the system. I can sense the fear in them through their stories. I’m not defending Mrs Thatcher in the slightest. I’m not educated enough too. However, one positive from her tenure is how phenomenal the music is from the ‘80s ! It’s so passionate, inspiring and creative. The lyrics have so much thought and meaning. I connect with so many artists from that era.
No matter how dark the times get a beacon of light will always shine through. I’m inspired by the 1980s and I don’t want to diminish any pain that my predecessors may have endured. Personally, it is helping me to grieve, heal and live. YOU CAN NOT SUPPRESS CREATIVITY! It will always find a way to evolve!
I do believe OUR NHS is not funded proportionately. However, it really isn’t just about pumping more money into it. I’m currently going through the service and I have another piece I wish to use to expand this point on.
In regards to this piece & my ideas for reform of The National Health Service (without pumping gazillions into it). Maybe billions are needed though?
I can’t speak for reform in terms of physical health, but the reformation of the mental aspect needs to include proper integration of databases and technology. It’s 2022 you can change the world on your mobile device. Why can’t we address the mental health crisis through information technology. I don’t mean health care through zoom, because you can’t sense emotion unless you are face to face.
You are passed from pillar to post. There is no adequate integration of mental health emergency treatment, follow up support, mental examination appointments. The worked to the bone staff can not do enough to help you! They try so hard, I sense they are tired and stressed.
You can honestly sense it from them.
Proof of this is, the Twitter account ‘NHS Nurses’. You can connect to them via Twitter by searching the name mentioned, their handle is ‘SocialistNHS’. They will soon have a following and a reach eclipsing 60 thousand people!
We need more mental health support workers. Not doctors who can sign you off with antidepressants and other legal medications. They’re just a quick fix, to get you out of the service quickly in order to care for the next individual in dire straights.
We need talkers, listeners, counsellors. We need to start and integrate THE NATIONAL TALKING SERVICE. THE NTS. A branch stemming from The NHS. This can begin by phoning a number similar to 999. There is one ? 111 ? I disagree, I called it when I was in a mental health crisis and heard a voice message telling me all lines are busy.
Maybe mental health just isn’t important right now to those in power. Maybe I should have addressed this as a letter to the current health minister Mr Sajid Javid. He has to be better than his predecessor, Mr Hancock who surely takes responsibility for splashing an estimated £37 billion on a Test and Trace system that did little to ease the Coronavirus Pandemic. How different might it be if we spent that to establish The National Talking Service.
To Mr Sajid Javid, please liaise with us at grass roots. Let’s make the changes that you are supposedly in your job for. Some of us are ready to talk ! Are you ready to listen ?
A quote from an inspirational artist that resonates with me right now, the one and only John Lennon. “You may say that I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one”
I hope you enjoyed this piece and it’s follow up in regards to my story in due course. For now though please express and communicate. Life is good. We just need more healers, not miracle workers.
Thomas Lee McKee on behalf of ‘YourVibe’.
The following link is to the NHS nurses on Twitter seeking reform.
Please also check out the following influencers through whatever platform suits you.
Brian Reade (Daily Mirror). He is also an author and his most recent book is ‘DIAMONDS IN THE MUD’. He is very inspirational in regards to social change and justice. Ian Byrne, the MP for West Derby, Liverpool & Dan Carden another local MP. These are the people who should be getting their red ties ready for cabinet.
Jamie Webster, another very inspirational connecting local working class vibe/hero too. He has too many songs that connect to me lyrically right now, so please just search him on Spotify and read his powerful words whilst listening.