National Health Service

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"Since its launch in 1948, the NHS has grown to become the world’s largest publicly funded health service. It is also one of the most efficient, most egalitarian and most comprehensive.

"The NHS was born out of a long-held ideal that good healthcare should be available to all, regardless of wealth. That principle remains at its core. With the exception of charges for some prescriptions and optical and dental services, the NHS remains free at the point of use for anyone who is resident in the UK...

"When the NHS was launched in 1948 it had a budget of £437 million (roughly £9 billion at today’s value). For 2011/12 it is around £106 billion." [1]

According to Stewart Player and Colin Leys writing in July 2012: "If any one company has played a decisive role in the destruction of the NHS, it is the US consultancy giant McKinsey – a fact avoided by the media until the passage of Andrew Lansley’s health bill looked assured." [2]



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  1. National Health Service Overview, organizational web page, accessed June 25, 2012.
  2. Stewart Player and Colin Leys, "McKinsey’s unhealthy profits," Red Pepper, July 2012.