Thursday, March 18, 2010

Former cabinet minister on Britain's National Health Service

Tony Benn, former cabinet minister and the longest-serving MP in the history of the British Labour Party, on Britain's National Health Service:

It was set up in Britain in 1948, sixty-one years ago. And I have with me the statement made by the government at the time. “Your new National Health Service begins on the 5th of July. […] How do you get it?

“It will provide you with all medical, dental, and nursing care. Everyone—rich or poor, man, woman or child—can use it or any part of it. There are no charges, except for a few special items. There are no insurance qualifications. But it is not a ‘charity’. You are all paying for it, […] as taxpayers, and it will relieve your money worries in time of illness.”

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