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History of the NHS

The National Health Service is one of the greatest achievements that this country has ever managed to create. The idea that all medical provision is provided for, free of charge, at the point of need is incredible. It was a suitable reward for the men and women of Britain that had laid down their lives during the Second World War. In spite of severe opposition from the Conservatives and many of the doctors themselves, the Labour Party was able to bring it into being in 1948. Everyone in the country received a leaflet that simply told them that all medical, dental and nursing costs were covered. This was regardless of their station in life. Apart from special items, nothing would be asked of them. It was also in great pains to point out that this was not a charity. It was paid for by the public, the taxpayer, themselves. It must have seemed like a miracle.

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For the first time people could go to the doctors and seek medical help. Illness and pain that they had suffered for years and years were suddenly cured. There was relief for so many as babies were able to be born in a hospital and at no point would it cost the patients any money.

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There were some difficulties though; the doctors were unhappy. They felt that they would lose revenue and livelihood plus the profession would be cheapened. This was solved by Aneurin Bevan, its architect. He simply paid them handsomely, or, as he rather bluntly put it “I stuffed their mouths with Gold” meaning that he would let the doctors see private patients as well as the NHS. Now we have locums to cover the gaps. Locum Insurance from MPRS locum insurance is a must if you use them.