Scots 'are better off under the UK's NHS'

GORDON Brown has dismissed SNP claims the NHS will be at risk if Scotland votes No to independence.

Loading Comments
Gordon Brown makes his points at the Emirates Arena                  Picture: Mark Mainz
Gordon Brown makes his points at the Emirates Arena Picture: Mark Mainz

The former Prime Minister also said more than £2000 is spent per head per year on healthcare in Scotland, which is £200 more than in England, according to figures for 2012-2013.

Speaking at a Labour campaign event in the Emirates Arena, Glasgow, Mr Brown again made his argument for a No vote and said there was "no point" getting rid of the jointly funded NHS.

Mr Brown said: "There is no point in getting rid of the unified funding of the NHS.

"Every year we spend £2115 for every Scot on health care. In England it is £1912, that's £200 less spent in England and in Wales it is even less.

"It is necessary we spend more in Scotland because of greater need and more rural areas."

The Yes campaign has claimed the NHS in England is at risk of privatisation and, as a result, the money allocated to Scotland from Westminster will be cut.

First Minister Alex Salmond has said the NHS is being privatised "by stealth" in England and claims the less cash spent south of the border on health means a cut in the Scottish block grant and pressure on the NHS in Scotland.

Mr Brown dismissed the notion. He said health matters were devolved so only the Scottish Government could privatise the NHS north of the border.

He added: "The Scots have all the powers in our own Parliament to prevent the NHS being privatised in Scotland. The only current political leader who has the powers to privatise the NHS in Scotland is Alex Salmond."

The No campaign have also said no government at Westminster could privatise the NHS against the wishes of the majority of people.

Mr Brown stressed that people in all parts of the UK wanted to keep the service free and not privatised, and added there was "no culture clash" between Scotland and England on the issue of the NHS.

He said: "We know the people of England, Wales and Northern Ireland share the same view as we do - that it should be free and never privatised and more should be spent on it."

Raising questions over the SNP's plans to generate funding for the health service, Mr Brown said the Nationalists had no proposals to raise tax for the most well-off or tax bankers' bonuses.

Finally, he claimed the SNP would give private energy firms a £300m boost and suggested they would be the biggest beneficiaries in an independent Scotland.

Ending his speech, Mr Brown stressed the unique arrangement of the NHS and said no other group of countries in the world had managed to achieve a shared system of healthcare funding,

He said: "There are no four nations in the world who share the cost of healthcare in the way we do in the UK.

"It is a unique arrangement - in some cases not even within one country have they managed to achieve what we have.

"You have to think twice of the benefits of throwing all this way.

"Scots benefit from being part of the UK system of funding."


Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on Evening Times on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis. If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.


Have you got a story?

Contact the news desk on 0141 302 6520 or email
A weekly round up of social highlights

A weekly round up of social highlights

Cat's Eyes on Glasgow

Chilling in Glasgow's first Ice Bar and getting Mhor than I bargained for




Michelle McManus

Michelle McManus

Columnist Michelle McManus is Sussed in the City, and loves to chat about anything and everything.

Games news:

Putting the world to rights

Gail's Gab

My thoughts after Police Scotland are ordered to apologise over IRA interrogation techniques slur.

Janice Bell

Janice Bell

You couldn’t make up half the stuff that happens to PA Janice Bell- some of the jams she gets herself into are worth a story or two.