‘Don’t you dare’: New York Times blasted over NHS ‘hit’ piece
A New York Times ‘hit’ piece on the demise of the UK's National Health Service (NHS) has sparked uproar among UK nationals, who said the US publication shouldn’t “dare” slam the “national treasure.”
The opinion piece features one furious NHS health worker after another, complaining that the public health service – introduced by the Labour government post-World War II – is not giving “people the care they need.”
The article starts with a bleak description of the current conditions of staff and the cash-strapped NHS, highlighting reports of frail people having to wait for up to 12 hours in emergency wards before they are tended to, and of non-urgent operations being postponed.
It invariably points to the toll Brexit and the deriving uncertainty surrounding EU citizens’ rights is having on the NHS, citing that almost 10,000 nurses quit their jobs in the year following the EU referendum in June 2016.
Not one of the piece's interviewees specifically cite government cuts as the problem behind the NHS' crisis, despite Tory-implemented austerity often cited as one of the key reasons behind the services demise. The demotion of said information was noted on Twitter.
In defense of right wingers, the Times routinely saves key info to the last -- if objective, the story might lead w/ "in the face of Tory cuts and an attempt to import for-profit models from the US, the NHS faces a health crisis.."— Jackie McCaffrey 🐦 (@jackiemccaffrey) January 24, 2018
Brits swiftly took to social media to hit out at the piece, with one user writing that“no other government” should feel entitled to slate the “utterly invaluable service.”
People who are allowed to slate the NHS: British people People who aren’t: the New York Times. So watch yourselves https://t.co/jSvbtgYwrW— Marcus (@marcusjdl) January 17, 2018
Another Twitter user asked why a US publication was running a hit piece on the UK’s NHS in the first place.
The New York Times doing the usual American hit piece on the NHS. The NHS is a national religion in the uk. No government would dare say anything against it. It is our greatest treasure— adam mcquade (@AdamMcquade) January 18, 2018
While dozens of people spoke up for their cherished health service when the NYT put out a tweet asking for patients and families of patients who used the NHS to describe their own experiences.
One person said:
Anyone in Britain who hasn’t used the NHS is a superhuman. Our mums give birth to us for free. We receive vaccinations at school growing up for free. And when something scary and sudden happens we get it treated without worrying about a huge bill arriving afterwards. #ThankYouNHS— Cat Wise (@C4T_W153) January 16, 2018
While another suggested the US shouldn’t be pointing the finger at the UK when its own private health care system leaves people “destitute.”
Brits (or anybody who’s lived there): Tell the New York Times about how the NHS, while imperfect, at least means one medical emergency won’t consign you to destitution. https://t.co/RmheOh0WRL— Julia Kite (@juliakite) January 16, 2018
Another called the article an “American anti-NHS campaign.”
I think this is an American ant NHS campaign that should be tackled by British Media #NHS#britishmedia #Opinion | Britain’s N.H.S. in Crisis: ‘We Might Break’ - The New York Timeshttps://t.co/ZR2sKqR55w— Dr. Nancy Wassef (@nancyemile) January 16, 2018
Some conceded that the NHS is suffering an unprecedented crisis, with reports of hospitals lacking vital equipment to treat patients, a staff shortage that has led to undergraduate medical students being called to intervene, and the four-hour limit to treat A&E patients being systematically missed.
Believe me. It's NOT a perfect, well-oiled machine. The Tory government has criminally underfunded the NHS. Thousands are dying in & out of hospital as a direct result their cuts. This is 100% fact. NHS staff have compared the situation to literally a "humanitarian crisis."— sarah (@pendragon1sarah) January 18, 2018
experiences vary across the country and a lot of people have great things to say- but resources have been stretched and stretched and STRETCHED. Serious underfunding and understaffing has seen the NHS hit breaking point. You'd be surprised at the serious domestic cracks here.— sarah (@pendragon1sarah) January 18, 2018
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