With a foreword by Tony Benn. Drawing on clinical experience dating
from the birth of the NHS in 1948, Julian Tudor Hart, a politically
active GP in a Welsh coal mining community, charts the progress of
the NHS from its 19th century origins in workers' mutual aid
societies, to its current forced return to the market. His starting
point is a detailed analysis of how clinical decisions are made. He
explores the changing social relationships in the NHS as a gift
economy, how these may be affected by reducing care to commodity
status, and the new directions they might take if the NHS resumed
progress independently from the market. This edition of this
bestselling book has been entirely rewritten with two new chapters,
and includes new material on resistance to that world-wide process.
The essential principle in the book is that patients need to
develop as active citizens and co-producers of health gain in a
humanising society and the author's aim is to promote it wherever
people recognise that pursuit of profit may be a brake on rational
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