Caught Smoking

We get the message: smoking is bad for you. Now leave fag packets alone

3 April 2014 23:31

What form do you reckon the government’s consultation on cigarette packaging is going to take? Given that health minister Jane Ellison has said that the government’s intention is clear and… Continue reading

Image: Getty

Why not fine those who waste the NHS’s resources?

1 April 2014 16:07

What do I want from the budget, I was asked. So I had a think. One plea was for no more pasty taxes, which I argued distracted from the more… Continue reading


New NHS boss warns that health service is facing its biggest challenge

1 April 2014 8:50

Simon Stevens is giving us the first glimpse of what he wants to do as the new chief executive of the NHS today. In a speech in Newcastle, he will… Continue reading

Tonight's edition of Dispatches on Channel 4 will reveal that at least 15,500 foetal remains were incinerated by 27 NHS trusts in the last two years. (Image: Getty/PHILIPPE HUGUEN/AFP/Getty Images)

Burning foetuses to heat hospitals: a perfect metaphor for modern Britain

24 March 2014 18:16

By way of a metaphor for the way the NHS and, come to that, the law regards foetuses, you can’t really better the reality, viz, that foetal remains from abortions… Continue reading

What would you like to see in this year's Budget?

What I want in the Budget: penalties for those who miss NHS appointments

16 March 2014 14:25

Every year the Budget comes and goes, amid a flurry of live blogging and urgent blog posts at The Spectator. And almost every year, the papers are full of the… Continue reading

The Francis Report into the failings at the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Trust is published today. Picture: Getty

In praise of those who have improved healthcare in Staffordshire

14 March 2014 16:00

Last week, the House of Commons considered the vital matter of the Francis Report – one year on. It is quite difficult at this stage in the tragedy of Stafford… Continue reading

General Election - National Health Service

Spending on health harms your wealth

14 March 2014 14:56

Much of the Budget debate next week will be devoted to the future growth rate of GDP and of total public spending; but there probably won’t be much attention paid… Continue reading

Australian Junior Athletics Championships

The Early Access to Innovative Medicines scheme will make us healthier for longer

14 March 2014 10:48

Imagine this: you take a routine trip to the doctors. Except it doesn’t turn out to be routine at all. Instead, the doctor tells you that you only have months… Continue reading

What would Ed Miliband's Britain look like? Turn to Wales. Photo: Getty Images.

Wales is a nightmare vision of Ed Miliband’s Britain

3 March 2014 10:06

If politics was science, you would call Wales the ‘control’ group, for public service reform. Here is a country where Labour are the only game in town and a socialist… Continue reading


The dream pill may not always be worth it

13 February 2014 11:58

A couple of years ago, I was put on the third-generation contraceptive pill Yasmin. ‘It’s good for your skin and stabilises your weight,’ the doctor said. And it’s true. I’ve found… Continue reading


Imagine the uproar if a Tory minister proposed a “do-it-yourself” NHS?

3 February 2014 9:25

Consider these two stories. In the first the government approves new proposals to overhaul hospital outpatient care. For once there isn’t even much of a pretence that this will improve… Continue reading

Soldiers in Fallujah, which has been retaken by rebel forces. Photo: AFP/Getty Images

Podcast: Islam’s 30 year war, Westminster’s wandering hands and the Tories’ NHS legacy

23 January 2014 9:00

Is the Sunni-Shia conflict in the Middle East making a new great war ever more likely? On this week’s podcast, Douglas Murray discusses the battle involving Iran, Iraq, Syria and… Continue reading

General Election - National Health Service

What the NHS really needs

4 January 2014 15:50

I blamed the pheasant casserole, but I did it an injustice. Its only contribution to the drama behind my disappearance in mid-December was a residue of lead shot in the… Continue reading

The quadrangle at St Bartholomew's Hospital in Smithfield, London. 1752. (Image: Getty)

Save the heritage of Barts Hospital

19 December 2013 14:16

Everybody wants to support cancer charities, don’t they? Take Maggie’s Trust, which ‘empowers people to live with, through and beyond cancer’. The Maggie’s approach is defined by their cleverly designed… Continue reading

David Cameron And Jeremy Hunt Visit A Hospital To Mark The 65th Anniversary Of The NHS

Jeremy Hunt calls for a ‘profound transformation in the culture’ of the NHS

19 November 2013 14:01

Jeremy Hunt has delivered his response to the Francis Report. It was as expected: monthly staffing figures on a ward-by-ward basis, minimum standards of safety for staff levels, a national… Continue reading


After Mid-Staffs, the NHS needs whistleblowers – and whistleblowers need protection from the public

19 November 2013 9:36

It is impossible, I would have thought, to have heard Debbie Hazledine’s account on the Today programme of her late mother’s mistreatment at Mid Staffs Hospital and not to have… Continue reading

Physician talking to patient

The return of the family doctor?

15 November 2013 9:13

Ministers have described the deal on GP contracts, negotiated by the government and the British Medical Association (BMA), as a return to the days when GPs were family doctors. Certainly,… Continue reading

Is all this tinkering enough to save the NHS? Illustration: Morten Morland

Sir Bruce Keogh denies that he is proposing two tier A&E

13 November 2013 9:12

Sir Bruce Keogh’s anticipated review into accident and emergency has been published today to a chorus of praise and boos. The Mail describes it as a ‘sticking plaster’. The Independent… Continue reading

Prime Minister David Cameron Speaks About The NHS

David Cameron prepares for winter of discontent in A&E

11 November 2013 8:31

There are two important NHS stories in the papers today. First, the Times reports (£) that A&E departments are facing severe pressures because of historic staff shortages. The paper notes: ‘Half… Continue reading

Prime Minister David Cameron Speaks About The NHS

Why Cameron’s NHS lines didn’t quite work at PMQs today

6 November 2013 17:42

Though the NHS made a welcome change from endless bickering about energy bills at today’s PMQs, the exchanges were just as unedifying. There is very little gain in the sort… Continue reading


Another rotten culture, another political risk on the NHS

6 November 2013 8:55

The allegations of a cover-up at Colchester General Hospital suggest something rotten in a culture, once again. The police have been called in by the Care Quality Commission to investigate… Continue reading

Labour and the Tories continue their political Super Mario fight for the 'party of the NHS' crown. Picture: Carla Millar

The next bitter battle over the NHS is looming

1 November 2013 15:46

It’s been a while since we had a nice big fat NHS row, but those who enjoy watching Andy Burnham and Jeremy Hunt fight over the ‘party of the NHS’… Continue reading

Royal Sussex County Hospital, UK

The View from 22 — tomorrow’s news today

27 October 2013 15:59

The Daily Mail appear to be avid readers of The Spectator but we’re pleased that they now follow our weekly podcast, the View from 22, just as closely. It yesterday ran… Continue reading

1 Comment

Simon Stevens could turn out to be Jeremy Hunt’s Mark Carney

26 October 2013 15:04

Remember the name Simon Stevens. He’s is the new chief executive of the NHS in England and is going to be absolutely crucial to whether the government can make its… Continue reading

Jeremy Hunt's reforms won't solve health tourism problems, says J Meirion Thomas.

NHS whistleblower: health tourism crackdown is an ineffective ‘disaster’

24 October 2013 15:27

Will the government’s plans to tackle abuse of the NHS by foreigners make any difference? The surgeon who first blew the whistle on health tourism, Professor J. Meirion Thomas, believes they… Continue reading