The government argued that competition between health care providers would lead to cost efficiency and improved quality of care – even though it was already clear that the savings promised by previous governments through privatising hospital cleaning were often at the expense of lower standards and increased hospital-acquired infections. Since then the evidence is mounting that competition does not reduce costs, not least because of the (new) expense of putting all services out to competitive tender, estimated at between £4.5 billion and £30 billion a year. (www.opendemocracy.net/ournhs/caroline-molloy/billions-of-wasted-nhs-cash-noone-wants-to-mention). For more details of the costs of competition, see our page on turning the NHS into a market.
Society becomes more wholesome, more serene, and spiritually healthier, if it knows that its citizens have at the back of their consciousness the knowledge that not only themselves, but all their fellows, have access, when ill, to the best that medical skill can provide.— Aneurin Bevan 1942