Oh, and the NHS is the WORLDS 5th largest employer at 1.7 million staff.
Also the largest bureaucracy in Europe.
Having worked for the NHS 'behind the scenes' for a few years, I have the widest imaginable range of feelings towards the people who comprise it. There are loads of people who care passionately about helping their patients, there are also plenty of people who couldn't care less, and nearly everyone has their hands tied thanks to decisions made by underinformed, overqualified office nobs. Ultimately, nearly all the problems it experiences come down to the fact that there is far too much Management - as of 2 years ago, the NHS was spending more on admin salaries than medical staff. I could fill pages writing about the monumental cockups and frustrations that I experienced (but then I'd probably be prosecuted
Personally, I'd like to send all the vociferous anti-NHS types to live in the US or the far east for a few months - no disrespect to any other countries, but I think they might have a little more appreciation for it when they returned.
...pretend here is reality, and not some expectant itch of july...