In September of 2004 my wife and I were on holiday in Malta. We had hired a car and were having a wonderful time exploring the island. It was after supper on the fifth day. We were sat in the bar when I felt a feeling of discomfort in my lower abdomen and then something ‘popped’ inside me. There was no sensation of acute pain just a vague knowledge that something was wrong.

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It has indeed been a baptism of fire. Within 2 hours of going live NHS Survival received harsh criticism. We were called a "Jeremy-Hunt bashing group", a "self-interest group and our aims are ridiculous". The one which hurt though is that we "don't represent patients".

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You will find this hard reading. No doubt some will accuse me of scaremongering. I concede that the picture I will paint is grim but I truly believe it to be a real possibility. I will not suggest a precise timescale these events – that would really be stretching it too far – but suffice to say we are talking months to a couple of years rather than decades.

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The NHS is dying, or to be more specific, is being killed, slowly and painfully. The political catchphrase being thrown around at the moment, that it has been receiving a ‘real terms increase’ in funding each year is, to be frank, a lie.

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High quality medical training is the key to a sustainable high quality NHS. The motivating force behind my decision to become involved in NHS Survival is simple, like many patients and doctors I have become increasingly exasperated and frustrated at the way in which structures have been 'reformed' in a rather evidence-free and potentially dangerous manner.

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