The Values of the NHS

The Values of the NHS

Dear Daily Devotion

I hope you found the last week’s reflections on rest both restful and thoughtful.  For the next week we’re going to look at the values of the NHS.

On Wednesday 5th July,  the National Health Service will be 75 years old.  It is said, wryly, that the NHS is the nearest thing the British have to a religion!  During the pandemic we clapped for NHS workers and other public servants; now we worry about the resources made available to it, and we, generally, have sympathy for NHS workers on strike for better terms and conditions.  We all need the NHS – the older we get the more we realise we need it.  

We reflect this week, in the NHS’ 75th Jubilee, on the values that underpin it at a time when it is creaking, its funding is a political football and waiting times increase hugely as health outcomes become steadily worse compared to our neighbours’.  The English NHS Constitution names six values that underpin it: Working Together for Patients, Respect and Dignity, Commitment to Quality of Care, Compassion, Improving lives, and Everyone Counts.  These are pretty universal values which we see at work in our religious tradition.  We will look at these values this week and reflect on them at a time when, for good or ill, politicians are softening us up for a radical rethink of how the NHS is to be funded.  

With every good wish

Andy

The Rev’d Andy Braunston
Minister for Digital Worship
 

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