the NHS

I just want to say thankyou to the NHS for looking after me so well ( hopefully I am not jinxing my future treatment by saying this out loud!). Within weeks of finding my lump, my local hospital had swept me up, diagnosed me, supported me, informed me, operated on me and is about to give me chemo and then radiotherapy. Not all the individuals have been fabulous, but personality of people cannot be changed, but the speed and warmth and professionalism has astounded me. Thank god for our NHS, and to live in a country where I have been given all this without a thought of whether I can afford it. For the first real time, the NHS and politicians policies about it are at the forefront of my mind and I am taking the issues seriously with the upcoming election. Thankyou to the NHS,


Yep. I agree cannot thank the NHS enough, first class treatment all the way.

take care x

I cannot agree more. The NHS were terrific for me. I must say most of the individuals were fantastic too. Most of the nurses could not do enough.
I had my birthday while in hospital and one of the nurses arranged tea and a birthday cake(and cards)with ladies from other wards. He was brilliant. I have never forgotten his kindness.

Even now, over three years on the NHS are still giving me the same brilliant after care when I go for check ups etc.

As you say tors, thank God for our NHS and that in this country we are not asked if we can afford it. I will certainly be looking at the issues and policies relating to the NHS in the election.

Also from me, thank you NHS.

Love and take care

Thistle xx

I’m another who is grateful to the NHS and I get fed up of all the bad reports. It’s like the press only tell you the worst bits and they never focus on the good.

I would say the only place my treatment fell down was at the level of my GP surgery, who were quite appalling at times regarding letters from Consultants not being acted on, the fact they seemed to know nothing of my treatment or drugs. The last straw was when I was refused referral for counselling and my Oncologist had to overrule them.

I’m so grateful for the NHS also. I know this treatment has cost thousands. Imagine if we lived somewhere else ! It doesn’t bear thinking about. Unlike cherub, everyone at my GP’s surgery has been fab also. I have always been seen on the same day with any S.E’s, the receptionists have been invariably helpful, doctors have phoned me at home, & district nurses came to give me injections, & after my 1st chemo, which was done with my wound not fully healed, to change my dressings for me.
Almost 20 years ago my son was knocked down by a car, & was in a coma for 9 days. In all, including physio, he had treatment for 11 months. Back then too, the standard of care was excellent. The NHS has always been there for me. We are so lucky to have it.

Couldn’t agree more.
I have had a couple of blips along the way but in general I am stunned by the excellence of my NHS treatment and care.
I am so tired of hearing all this nonsense about “broken Britain”. The NHS is a magnificent institution - lumbering at times and not always without fault. But magnificent nonetheless considering it is one of the largest employers on the planet with more than 1.5 million staff members.

I am deeply grateful for its existence and very proud to come from a nation which values free public health at point of use as a moral priority.

i agree with you all… i think the NHS is great… some individuals not so great but on the whole most are brilliant… i have a fantastic GP and all the docs, nurses and receptionist at the surgery know me and try to accommodate for my needs and im treated very much as an individual and not just joe bloggs.

my breast consultant is fabby and again he treats my like a person not just a number.

i also work for the NHS and want to offer my support and treat my patients as individuals too.


I would like to add my support! I was treated quickly, and everyone behaved with courtesy and respect, positive enough to give me confidence but without attempting to gloss over things or belittle any problems. They even did unexpected things like telephoning me at home to see if I was ok after chemo, and offering to send a district nurse round to administer injections. Efficient and professional throughout

It woul be good to keep the thread going so that we can put up anything we spot regarding the election policies and NHS, as its high on my agenda for voting.


I too think the NHS is fantastic, i have had exelent care throughout my treatment, from same day DX to incredibly fast surgery ( 5days later) , i cannot fault the NHS at all and feel very lucky that we live in a country that provides a free health care service for all.

The NHS and especialy Cancer and its future treatments are forfront in my mind with the forthcoming general election, having read all the manifestos ,also avidly watching the leaders debates, and having also emailed all my MPs , i am slowly making my mind up where my vote will go .

I havent bothered voteing for many years but feel compelled to do so this time , Of course all the parties will say they are committed to the NHS , but i did like David Camerons pledge on a Cancer Fund, to allow access to treatments that are currently not available to people who need them , because of cost , i know the NHS isnt a bottemless pit but i was shocked to read that only 1% of the NHS funding gos on Cancer,and that the UK is falling behind the rest of Europe in cancer survival.
There are so many peoples still dying in this country when these treatments if they were available could possibly save their lives or at least extend them. He also pledges to end the post code lottery that exsists at the minute which i am of course also in favour off. People will also be able to write reviews on Gps/Hospital care with their pay being reflected on performance rather then accross the board which seems much fairer to me.
Gosh, im sounding like an conservative supporter now ,which i never have been ever lol, but this time wherever my vote gos it will be on the policies that matter the most to me .
I think this general election is very important this time round so i definately wont be wasteing my vote this year.
Sorry if ive rambled on a bit lol.
All the best
Linda x

i was a student nurse when the Tories were last in power and saw how they damaged the NHS by trying to run it as a money making business, which introduced the concept of the post code lottery and this will stop from ever voting for them… theres thousands more nurses since they were put out in 1997. their plans to cut spending on NHS bureaucracy will result in cuts in NHS spending full stop.

sorry for my wee rant.

Totally agree with you Lulu. Don’t think I need say any more.


Hi Everyone, Absolutely have to agree with you regarding the NHS. My only gripe was with my GP who although very pleasant, didn’t push my initial scan enough even though he knew my previous history of breast cancer. He told me it was gallstones and even though I went back twice, he still maintained that it was nothing to worry about. Then, when we found it was secondary into my liver, he just assumed I would die within the next couple of months. That was in January and it was horrific for all the family. When I did get to see the oncologist he put my mind at rest (at least for the time being) and the treatment has been first class and is working I’m pleased to say. All of the staff are marvellous and grossly overworked. They never stop from morning til night and I admire them enormously. I put a call in to the Macmillan Nurses and they rang me straight back to advise me about the Blue Badge and DLA and they are sorting it out for me. Fantastic! So yes, I agree that we should all think very carefully about who to vote for in this next election. Take care everyone, hope you are all having a good day. Dianne x x x

Lulu & Krissy - I am with you all the way!
Tories = creeping privatisation of the NHS.

I wrote to my MP about the Macmillan ‘Cote Cancer Support’ campaign and I received a reply yesterday that I’d like to post here as it is the best detail I have seen on the Conservative policies on cancer so far. It covers most of the concerns that we all have. Sorry its so long, but read on if you have a couple of minutes to spare.

E xx

Thank you for drawing to my attention Macmillan’s ‘Vote Cancer Support’ campaign. I know that Mark Simmonds, the Shadow Minister with responsibility for cancer, has discussed these matters with the Chief Executive of the organisation, Cieran Devane, on a number of occasions. Firstly, on the issue of survivorship, we recognise that increasing numbers of people are living through and beyond their cancer, and need to be fully supported. Most importantly, they need to have accessible and accurate information on their condition, including signs and symptoms of secondary cancer. They must also have access to emotional and psychological support, as well as assistance in accessing the benefits and financial support to which they are entitled. The Conservative Party are particularly concerned that many individuals do not experience the same level of support when they are diagnosed with secondary cancer as they did for their primary diagnosis, and we would consider the implications carefully, to ensure there is access to support, such as clinical nurse specialists, for all. We are well aware of the excellent work of the National Cancer Survival Initiative, lead by Macmillan, and will continue to follow its work closely.

Secondly, on the issue of access to medicines, particularly for rarer cancers, we have recently outlined our proposals to reform NICE which would speed up and widen access to new drugs and treatments. These include:

To remove the process of Ministerial referral for drugs. Under the current system it is politicians who decide which drugs and medicines NICE assesses for cost and clinical effectiveness. This has added up to a 12 month delay, even before the NICE process begins. We would remove politicians from these decisions completely, and allow our independent NHS Board to refer new treatments to NICE.
To allow NICE to begin its assessment as the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency begins Phase III of its trials, further speeding up the NICE process.
To allow appraisal of the value or benefit of a treatment to include its wider social value, which will make the system fairer and more effective.
To introduce the principles of value-based pricing into the NHS where appropriate – so the price paid by the NHS for drugs reflects its therapeutic value. This would be a fundamental change in how drugs are funded, and would need to be phased in over a period of time, alongside risk-sharing schemes, where the manufacturer and the NHS share the cost of the drugs.
On the specific issue of rare cancers we have pledged to consider the introduction of disease specific measures of cost-effectiveness, which coupled with the above proposals, would result in more drugs reaching the patients faster and would ensure that treatments that are routinely available elsewhere in Europe would be available in Britain.

The issue of end of life care we have considered carefully, as it is a vital part of the cancer pathway. Research by Marie Curie Cancer Care and YouGov has shown that most people would want to be cared for at home (64%) or in a hospice (23%) if they were terminally ill. Yet about half the people with cancer die in hospital, with less than a quarter (22%) achieving their wish to die at home. Governments must respect these wishes, and we want a structure of community nursing and care which enables terminally ill people to die in a place of their choosing. We would like to see an expansion of the Marie Curie Delivering Choice Programme and has increased choice over place of death whilst reducing the cost of end of life care by 8%. Alongside this, we will establish, through commissioning guidelines prepared by NICE, advice on end-of-life care which reflects best practice and will consider implementing a national tariff with respect to palliative care, which will in effect offer full cost recovery to voluntary sector.

The Conservative Party has outlined proposals to end unnecessary structural reorganisations of the NHS, abolish top down targets and judge success on outcomes. We are particularly focused on detecting cancer earlier; as evidence shows that early detection increases survival rates. In particular, we want to encourage people to attend cancer screening regularly, and we would like greater understanding of lifestyle choices that can cause cancer and education regarding the symptoms of cancer. We would also like those with cancer to have greater access to Clinical Nurse Specialists, and are endeavouring to change the funding allocation so that the allocation of funding better reflects the burden of disease.

We aspire to have five year cancer outcomes amongst the best in Europe, and we believe that these proposals will help us to achieve this ambitious aim.

Yours sincerely

Hi all

Totally agree with you all that our NHS is so very important and something for us all to be proud of. Like Lulu & Krissy & Msmolly I am terrified of the Tories getting in as they will continue to dismantle our NHS and public services like they did last time and farm out to the private sector. Unfortunately new money going into the NHS has frequently gone into management not front line services.

I have also received excellent care from the wonderful staff at Raigmore hospital where I get my treatment. Only complaint is that it took nearly 8 weeks from first visit to doctor to my op by which time cancer had spread. There does seem to be a big difference on how quickly you are treated depending on where you live which is very wrong. Saying that defending the NHS is a priority for me.

Great discussion keep it up.

Anne xx

The reason we have had good experiences with the NHS is not down to luck - it is down to Government policy and funding. We must keep it in safe hands. Brown has pledged to deliver suspected cancer patients with a diagnosis in a week.

Cameron uses Sir Peter Gershon as one of his key advisers on health. Gershon is chairman of General Healthcare Group which is the largest PRIVATE health provider in the country.


•89,000 more nurses and 44,000 more doctors in the NHS since 1997 have helped to drive up standards and drive down waits.
•Waiting lists have fallen by over 500,000 and waiting times are now at their lowest level since records began.
•In 1997 284 000 patients waited more than 6 months for an operation. The figure today is almost zero.
•3 million more operations are carried out each year than in 1997.
•The premature mortality rate for cancer is the lowest ever recorded, saving nearly 9,000 lives in 2006 compared to 1996.
•Premature mortality from cardiovascular diseases has dropped by more than 40 per cent since 1996, saving nearly 34,000 lives a year.
•The NHS has delivered the largest hospital building programme in its history, with 118 new hospital schemes opened and a further 18 under construction.
•Created new services to provide patients with greater convenience including around 100 new walk-in centres and over 750 one-stop primary care centre.

Gordon Brown is my MP and I would not vote for him if he was the last man on earth. This is because of his record on the economy and let’s face it if (or maybe even when) the economy collapses in this country there will be no money for the NHS anyway. Personally, I think the situation has got worse under Labour,especially with regard to the ridiculous contracts GPs were able to negotiate for themselves - why are some GPs being paid more than hospital Consultants for instance? This is terrible as there is such a huge difference in skill levels. No wonder some hospital doctors are so demoralised. We also need to get rid of all the public sector “non jobs” in my view and there are enough of them where I live.

Another reason I will never vote for him is because of the benefits system and the way it is skewed towards people who choose not to work (I have experience of this through some voluntary work I do). Despite working since 1977 with little in the way of breaks (have never taken maternity leave etc), I couldn’t access the benefits system when I was ill. I see people in my voluntary job who have never worked, yet my monthly income for running a business and working anything up to 60 hours a week is sometimes less than they are claiming, when you take into consideration their housing benefit and council tax is being paid.

Sorry, I just don’t buy their propaganda.

Lets face it, we wouldn’t be having a discussion about the NHS if the tories had their way, it wouldn’t exist - simple as that. It would be like America, you have insurance if your the lucky ones who can afford it and if not, tough! The tories didn’t want it when it came into being whilst Labour were in power brought about by Nye Bevan. They look after the wealthy, always have and always will. Totally agree there are lots of issues I disagree with under Labour but alot of the economical problems with regards the banks came about globally stemming from America. Gordon Brown and his policies are certainly not perfect but I dread the opposition.


Don’t be fooled into thinking that the Tories will make the NHS better. They are inherently in favour of private medicine. Ken Clarke ruined the NHS dentistry in the early 90’s by making dentists get paid per person rather than the treatment they did. As running a dental surgery is very expensive, most dentists had no choice but to ditch the system and go private. The current renumerating system is not perfect and there are lots of flaws, but it is encouraging dentists back into the system. Tories will scrap that completely and all that will be available in terms of dentistry on the NHS will be emergency treatment. I work for the NHS in a dental hospital which is funded to care for people who have cancer, kidney transplants, HIV etc. The tories would I have no doubt, scrap that service and these vulnerable people would be left to pay. Yes, there are scroungers etc on a welfare system - there are always those who are unemployable. You should go to Vancouver where I originate from and see what happens to those who are unemployable because of drugs/alcohol abuse, mental illness etc. They are left on the streets in a ghetto type community, begging on the streets and seem to be much more in evidence than beggars in London. The welfare state and NHS has many problems, but we should thank our lucky stars that it exists, especially most of us who have benefitted from it recently. I’ll get off my soap box now!

The NHS is wonderful in very many ways. I am so thankful for the full range of treatments I was able to have - surgery, chemo and radiotherapy and now drugs.
My personal experience has been that largely the care from doctors, my GP, surgeon and oncologist has been excellent. Care from specialist nurses has been very good including chemo nurses. Care from nurses on the ward has been very hit and miss and at times even bordering on dangerous. I don’t say that lightly as I used to be a nurse myself.

I would like to see greater focus on frontline services to ensure that people working in them are given greater respect, better training and status.

I’ve continued to work in the health field and had much contact with the NHS. Yes many things have improved but not all and in spite of all the increased spending there is a lot of wastage. There are projects in which huge amounts of money are invested that fall flat on their face when the results come out. There are projects which duplicate work already carried out. Also there is often a huge gap between management perceptions and those of clinical staff.

I hope whoever gets in power keeps the NHS a priority.
Elinda x