There are two options. One is to increase the funding of the NHS. This will simply not be possible beyond what John Major has already pledged since it will require tax increases.
The other option is to do it outside the NHS through individuals, either off their own backs or through co-operative schemes, devoting a greater share of their income net of tax to private health care. Labour's problem is that it still at heart regards this as somehow morally flawed, and is thus blinded to the possibilities available for NHS-private sector co-operation.
Labour's attitude is bizarre since its 19th-century roots lie in the very self-help welfare tradition of friendly societies and mutuals in which most non-state health care originated.
Head of Research
Social Market Foundation
London SW1Reuse content