November 16, 2021
Reform UK leader Richard Tice said that Britain has been “brainwashed” into accepting long waiting times to receive medical attention under the country’s socialised healthcare system.
Laying out a conservative alternative to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Tory government, Richard Tice said that if elected to Parliament, he would push for common-sense reform to the National Healthcare System (NHS) to eliminate the waiting lists that have persistently plagued the system.
Speaking exclusively to Breitbart London ahead of the upcoming by-election in the Old Bexley and Sidcup constituency in South East London, Mr Tice said that Reform UK is the only party in the country offering solutions to fix the failings of the NHS.
Reform UK, formerly the Brexit Party, has outlined a plan which it claims would help people on government waiting lists by providing them with vouchers for private healthcare facilities. This, they said, would cut the time patients need to wait to see a doctor while retaining the ability for the system to remain free at the point of delivery.
“Why do we accept waiting lists in this country? We’ve been brainwashed,” Tice said, adding that “most great countries, whatever healthcare system they’ve got, don’t have waiting lists. And yet, we think they’re normal.”
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Richard Tice said that presently the “bureaucratic blob is in charge”, whereas under his proposed system the patient would be put first. Under the party’s plan, they say, if a patient can’t be seen by a GP within three days then they would receive a voucher from the government to attend a private doctor. The same would apply in circumstances in which patients can’t see a consultant in three weeks or receive an operation within nine weeks.
He argued that through adopting the voucher programme, the “engines” of private care efficiency would flood into the system, while still being able to cover everyone.
Though the NHS has become akin to a national religion, the evidence does not shine too kindly on Britain’s socialised healthcare system, which ranks dead last among G7 nations in terms of hospital beds per capita. The UK also ranks the second lowest within G7 in the number of nurses, despite spending the fourth-most per capita on healthcare.
The problems facing the NHS have only been compounded by the Wuhan virus, with “enormous backlogs” of patients during the pandemic resulting in an estimated 20,000 undiagnosed cancer screenings, a report found last month.
The system becoming overwhelmed by the number of patients, particularly during winter months, has been a longstanding phenomenon, however, with hospitals frequently being overrun in the winter season prior to the pandemic.
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Mr Tice also attacked the nominally Conservative Party on taxes, which are set to soar to a seventy-year high, in large part to pay for the NHS. While Boris Johnson pledged not to raise taxes in the Tory Party 2019 election manifesto, the promise, like many others, has since been abandoned.
The Reform UK leader said that in order to stimulate growth — which will be critical for the economy coming out of lockdown restrictions — the government should reduce taxes rather than increase them.
The rebranded Brexit Party has called for the threshold for paying income tax to be raised from £12,500 to £20,000. The plan would also see many small businesses exempt from any paying corporation tax.
“If you cut taxes… for the lowest paid and the smallest businesses, then you’re essentially injecting money into the economy at the lowest level and it will circulate around the most times and therefore you get the highest value and the highest productivity,” Tice said.
“An individual or a small business owner will always spend a pound in their pocket better and more wisely and get greater value, higher productivity, than a bowler-hatted civil servant spending it on your behalf.”
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