Following recent reports in the national press, it is very much NFR’s view that NHS nurses in Scotland will only be able to have their full pay rise in April as a result of ongoing and wide spread subsidies from English tax payers.

While many nurses in England will no doubt be upset by this deeply un-egalitarian move they should not however be surprised by the actions of vote-motivated politicians in the Labour Party who clearly hope that this move will stave off the Scottish National Party.

Not only does the NHS fail patients but it has a long tradition of failing nurses. That is why NFR believes nurses should get away from such nonsense through the wholesale privatisation of all NHS hospitals and provision.

The NHS should simply be recast as a funder, alongside many private alternatives, but it should no longer be a provider of services or a direct employer of medical and health professionals.

There is no reason that the state should own any provision in UK healthcare or indeed have any say in nurses pay. In today’s world the idea of national collective bargaining for nurses is ludicrous. Pay rates should be set commercially and in response to local economic realities.

This will not only encourage healthy competition between providers but most importantly it will serve the interests of the people who matter the most – the patients.