'Those Who Cure You Will Kill You'

“If you can find money to kill people [referring to money spent to fight World War II], you can find money to help people,” said Tony Benn, a former Member of Parliament, in Michael Moore’s movie “Sicko.”

Contrast that thought with the eerie statement told to Canon Andrew White , a senior British cleric working in Baghdad, by an al-Qaeda leader in Iraq – “Those who cure you will kill you,” according to the Times (U.K.)

The Times said that the eight suspects involved in the recent British terror plots, “are all young, Muslim and connected to the medical profession. But they come from Jordan, Iraq, other Middle Eastern countries and India …”

According to the July 5 Telegraph (U.K.), another 45 British doctors have chatted online about carrying out terror raids in the United States.

It seems the British National Health Service (NHS) has come full circle since its inception in 1948. So much for that Hippocratic oath.

The artificial marketplace created by government-funded health care caused doctor shortages and has forced the NHS to look beyond its borders. Critics of the British system cite long waits and lack of resources.

So how has the NHS attempted to meet demand?

“Britain’s National Health Service has long relied on skilled foreign doctors to meet staffing shortfalls, and foreigners have long been drawn to its relatively generous salaries and exacting standards of training,” wrote Mark Landler and Sarah Lyall in the July 4 New York Times.

“Of the nearly 239,000 doctors registered with the General Medical Council, some 90,000 qualified in countries other than the United Kingdom,” The New York Times article continued.

Great Britain changed their rules about hiring doctors just last year, according to the Guardian (U.K.). Before April 2006, the British had very loose regulations for hiring foreign doctors. It was possible for a doctor to move to Britain and practice without a work permit. But Michael Moore left that detail out in his glorification of the British NHS in “Sicko.”

The law of unintended consequences strikes again.
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Julia A. Seymour's picture

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