2020 has been an extremely challenging and transformative year for us as individuals, for our communities, and for our NHS. This is a unique moment, where crisis presents opportunity for positive change.
Our most fundamental priority during this pandemic has been saving lives and ensuring the wellbeing of our communities, both physically and mentally. This will continue to be a priority long after the immediate threat has passed as we navigate an uncertain and complex future. We all need to be prepared and we all need our NHS to be as well prepared and resourced as is possible.
The significant and life changing role that the NHS has always played in our lives has been magnified by the Coronavirus pandemic through the lives that have been saved, those which tragically could not and through the enormous effort, bravery, professionalism, and commitment of healthcare and social care workers who have selflessly placed their lives on the line to treat and care for others. We are humbled by their determination, compassion and sacrifice. We also now better understand how intrinsic the NHS is to the health and social outcomes of our communities, and our utter reliance on its effectiveness as a healthcare system.
As we now truly recognise and appreciate the role the NHS plays, we must also acknowledge that the demand for healthcare will only rise in the future, meaning we should be willing to further invest in and support its future.
I believe we can see this crisis as an opportunity to recalibrate, reconsider, and re-emerge as a stronger, more compassionate nation willing to build a better and fairer society and we need a strengthened and nurtured NHS to be able to do so. We need to take inspiration from the resilience and flexibility shown by our health and social care workers in a time of extreme challenge, and adapt and stand up for the difference we want to make and see. We need to work from a place of purpose, looking ahead proactively and investing in our NHS so it can be prepared to face the inevitable ongoing challenges. To consider the importance of prevention, digital systems and innovative technologies, and of true collaboration between the NHS and the public, private and charity sectors who have never been more united to help alleviate pressure and provide support in any way possible. Surely this is a positive, collaborative, solution-focused strategy for the future?
Let’s commit to the differences we want to see and encourage others to do the same.
Let’s care for our NHS as it has cared for us.