Readers' letters - February 3

US experience made me value NHS more

Friday, 3rd February 2017, 4:36 pm
Updated Friday, 3rd February 2017, 5:41 pm

My wife and I are in the USA, where we spend a lot of time, and over the past four weeks we have both had serious illnesses.

We noted the letter online about the question of charging for GP visits and the discussion about the NHS in general.

Those who complain about our health service should experience being ill in America.

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A severe chest infection and very severe pain caused by pleurisy took me to the Emergency Room of the local hospital.

The first thing that happened was a requirement to pay $1,300 before any treatment.

This, following blood tests, X-rays and a CT scan, brought the cost to near $2,000.

I was in the ER for six hours and was treated incompetently and left still in severe pain.

A complaint to the medical director meant I then had effective treatment and my refusal to have to pay for what should have been done on my first visit was accepted.

Without discount the total cost for two outpatient visits should have been near $20,000!

My wife is being treated for pneumonia and the cost for the prescribed medication is, so far, $210 ( $144 for 10 antibiotic tablets), in addition to the medical fees, currently nearly $200!

We appreciate and value our health service but never so much as when you experience something like this.

The thought of this Government ever contemplating taking us down the US road where patients are customers and we have medicine being a (huge) profit-making business should bring us out onto the streets to protect the NHS. I, for one, will oppose it in all possible ways, as so should we all.

Barry Probin

via email


Politically correct games by BMA

Most people will find it quite amazing that, at a time of massive problems within the NHS, the BMA has found time to indulge themselves in political correctness by producing guidelines to their 156,000 doctor members on how to deal with patients.

They advise that pregnant women should not be referred to as expectant mothers but as “expectant people”. The elderly as “older people,” disabled lifts as “accessible lifts” and those who are biologically male or female should be called “assigned male or female”.

All of this “aimed at promoting an inclusive workplace” and, referring to maternity and pregnancy, it says “ Gender inequality is reflected in traditional ideas about the roles of women and men”.

Political correctness is the invisible enemy, whereby people are intimidated into surrendering their long-held and common sense views by people with an agenda to change society into their own rather bland and dull world of socialism which stifles freedoms.

The BMA should stop playing their political games and get on with the job that they are paid to do. They should also think of real ways to improve the NHS and, with it, the patients they treat.

Philip Griffiths

North West President, UKIP


We made our bed, we must sleep in it

I notice the Guardian newspaper and left-wing know-it-all Derek Hatton are having a pop at Jeremy Corbyn over his three-line whip for the Article 50 vote, which is allowing the PM to shunt us out of Europe.

That is a ridiculous position to take against the Labour leader. We had a referendum and, yes, it was a terrible decision built on lies but where does democracy fit in if we start going against what the entire nation voted for? It would be equivalent of the “we know best” attitude displayed by the Parliamentary Labour Party when they decided to try and oust Corbyn after he was legitimately elected by the party members.

We have made our bed so now we must sleep in it, otherwise we are making a mockery of the whole political system that we have fought wars to keep.

Harry Francis

via email


Increase number of prison inmates

Former Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke has called for the number of prison inmates to be cut. He continued that “foolish sentencing policies” have left jails overcrowded and unable to properly rehabilitate inmates.

On the contrary Mr Clarke, the number of inmates should be increased for the protection of us all by stopping foolish sentencing policies that hand down inadequate sentences, don’t allow anything like the full terms to be served, and give suspended sentences too often when custody is far more appropriate. If this means building more new prisons, then let’s get on with it.

Bob Watson

Address supplied

USA politics

Trump won’t listen to UK liberals

In the 2016 election campaign, Donald Trump was clear on what he would do if elected, this seems to have been ignored or disregarded by Hillary Clinton-backing (non-voting) liberals here, assuming that she would win.

She lost.

President Trump was explicit in saying that he wanted to cut back drastically on migration. He was also explicit on putting America first and migration slashing fits into this. He is certainly not going to let foreign, outside, non-voting liberals change his mind.

Michael O’Sullivan

via email


Please send me your used stamps

I collect used postage stamps for a number of animal charities and wonder if any readers would save their used stamps and send them to me for this worthy cause.

I’m also looking for snail mail penpals.

Miss A Conroy

34 Fairfield Road,


Nr Pulborough,

West Sussex, RH20 3JZ


Theresa, the NHS really is in a mess

Whatever Theresa May pretends at PMQs, the NHS is in a mess and that leaves patients and staff queuing in frustration.

Max Nottingham

via email


Please can we leave Eurovision?

Now that we are to leave the EU, please can we, as a nation, Brexit from the Eurovision Song Contest as well?

Dr John P Whiteley

Address supplied