Over the past 12 months, I have used many more NHS services than most 27-year-olds, including emergency care, routine investigations and invaluable support form my GP.
I have accessed help from both a physical and mental health perspective and the care I have received has always been first class.
However, my experience has also allowed me to see first-hand just how stretched the NHS is.
For the service to survive into the 21st century without risking back-door (or even open) privatisation, a serious increase in spending is required.
But that increase must be sustainable against a fragile economy facing the uncertainties of Brexit.
Adding additional borrowing puts our nation’s financial security at risk, and cutting funding from other vital areas such as education or welfare would lead to separate funding crises in those departments as our population continues to grow.
I would, therefore, fully support the Liberal Democrats’ commitment to a 1p increase in personal taxation, providing the additional £6bn generated is ring-fenced for health and social care expenditure.
Adding 1p to personal taxation would have little impact on most people’s disposal income but it would make a huge difference to securing the future of one of the country’s most-loved – and most-needed – institutions.
Alan Collins Pérez de Baños
Goudhurst Road, Gillingham