LETTERS: NHS is at a crossroads over how it is being run

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IN 1946 one of Aneurin Bevan’s founding principles for the NHS was that it be free at the point of delivery.

But what was more important to him was how to manage and deliver health care services. Sadly that is no longer the case today.

The junior doctors dispute justifies the case, and that includes our GP services up and down the country, including Scotland, where there are high levels of stress and sickness among all the staff.

Our NHS is now at a crossroads, where there is a rising demand and an overall gap in funding reaching billions of pounds, which is fast becoming unsustainable and in need of urgent reform.

The strike action taken by the junior doctors is not just about their contracts and long hours, but about the overall structure of how our NHS is being managed.

Chas Dennis, Niddrie Marischal Road, Edinburgh

Gardners Crescent blow warning to drivers

As local councillor I share in the obvious disappointment of residents in the Gardners Crescent area over a car ploughing into a wall so soon after a long project to restore the central garden area was completed.

Ironically, the Friends of Gardners Crescent is due an EGM on March 21 to discuss what the future holds, so it is really sad that what should have been a meeting to mark the end of a very large and sometimes arduous project will be soured by that crash.

As I understand it, the police do have details of the car owner and quotes are already being sought to see what the cost would be to put right the damage to the walls and railings.

Meanwhile, to anyone driving in what is very largely a residential street, please slow down and respect the area.

Gavin Corbett, Green Councillor for Fountainbridge - Craiglockhart

We don’t need tartan and shortbread BBC

On the Scotland 2016 show, SNP apologist, Lesley Riddoch tells us the BBC in Scotland should be like Iceland’s TV with its 11 channels for a 300,000 population.

I’ve never seen Icelandic TV, but so many hours of TV for so few potential viewers doesn’t immediately suggest quality TV output.

Ms Riddoch knows the BBC is respected across the globe as one of the world’s leading broadcasters of news and current affairs, documentaries, light entertainment and excellent drama. The truth is, for her quality doesn’t matter - Ms Riddoch can’t stand the ‘British’ bit being beamed into every home in Scotland.

Ms Riddoch reflects the SNP’s politically motivated ambition to reduce the corporation’s pan-UK output in Scotland. The nationalists want us to view everything through a lens of Scottishness. Their ambition is to separate us from the rest of the UK, politically and culturally, so, should we ever again be obliged to vote on the break-up of the UK, we’ll feel little familiarity with England, Wales and N Ireland.

Iceland style TV? Thanks, Lesley, but I’d rather stick with the BBC just as it is.

Martin Redfern, Royal Circus, Edinburgh

Check pollution levels before 20mph limit

We should have an independent body with no connection to the council to check pollution levels before and after the introduction of the 20mph limit. If it’s found to be worse, will they end this crazy idea?

Mr Raymond Ross, Hutchinson Avenue, Edinburgh

One EU referendum vote is quite enough

So David Cameron has now declared for and on behalf of the entire population of the UK that there will be no 
second referendum on EU membership. But why would we want a second referendum? That is the EU way of doing things – ask the people what they want and if they don’t vote correctly, back to the polling booths.

If we vote to come out of this creeping dictatorship, we are well within our democratic rights to set up a new version of the common market.

It would be a very interesting situation if other disillusioned EU members decided that was for them too, and they also left to revert to sovereign status.

Colin Cookson, Stenton, Glenrothes

Independence vote adds to uncertainty

AS the ONS released figures showing Scottish house prices stagnating while they rose across the rest of the UK, and Scottish unemployment rose to 5.8 per cent while falling in England Wales and Northern Ireland, Nicola Sturgeon told ITN that Brexit could lead to another referendum in Scotland.

At the same time Alex Salmond said a Tory election win in 2020 could lead to another referendum. Do the SNP leaders not realise that this uncertainty is leading to house prices falling and unemployment rising?

As oil remains at $33 a barrel, independence looks like one almighty rush into austerity to mirror Portugal, Spain, Ireland and Iceland.

Michelle Smythe, Dalry Road, Edinburgh

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