The British health-care system has reached its crisis point

Who would want to be operated on by a surgeon if they knew his death rate was 40 per cent?

At Wexham Park it was not just kept quiet: the consultant was promoted. And when a fellow surgeon tried to raise the alarm, he was blocked and harassed at every turn.

The report highlights huge structural problems, with a top-heavy cadre of bureaucrats spending their time – and our money – feuding with each other, against a backdrop of deepening financial problems and a chronic bed shortage.

Shockingly, we have also established that 3,500 people died last year because of NHS blunders, a rise of a quarter in just a year.

Urgent reform is vital. But the plans to turn A&E into a two-tier system, as we also report today, are a regressive step.

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