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Medics launch NHS for Yes campaign to 'protect health service'

Concerns over privatisation and Westminster cuts focus of new pro-independence group.

Nurse: The 49-year-old was sacked after admitting defrauding the NHS.
© STV

Healthcare staff have formed a new group to campaign for a Yes vote in the independence referendum.

About 100 medical workers, including surgeons, consultant doctors, GPs, pharmacists, dentists, hospital porters and janitors have joined NHS for Yes ahead of September's vote.

The group, which was formally launched in Glasgow on Saturday, said only independence can "protect" Scotland's health service from Westminster spending cuts.

Dr Willie Wilson, co-founder, said: "Independence offers us a unique chance to secure Scotland's health service - to protect it from future Westminster funding cuts, and the damaging impact of privatisation south of the border.

"We are fortunate that health is already devolved to the Scottish Parliament, and it is a shining example of self-government for Scotland demonstrably being far better than Westminster government. But devolution is not enough.

"Privatisation and commercialisation are now rampant in the health service south of the border. This means that competitive tendering is now compulsory and GPs are obliged to consider which hospital offers the best deal rather than which will give the best outcome for patients.

"In Scotland, we are not going down this road - but the more Westminster cuts Scotland's budget, and the more the state withdraws from direct NHS provision in England, the greater Scotland's budget will be squeezed as a consequence because of the way the Scottish Parliament is funded. That is why it is vital that Scotland is in charge of all the revenue raised in Scotland with a Yes vote and independence.

"A Yes vote will give us the protection our health service needs."

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