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Leading article: Facts hard to swallow.

WE have long suspected that the National Health Service is in terminal decay but now we know for sure that it is rotten to the core.

In some parts of the Midlands it is impossible to find a dentist willing to take on NHS patients.

Only those who can afford to pay are guaranteed treatment, which is a complete reversal of everything the NHS stands for.

Dentists claim they cannot afford to take on NHS patients and make a living . Their critics - especially those with a chronic toothache -will accuse them of being greedy.

The one certainty is that sorting out this shameful mess ought to be Tony Blair's number one priority.

He has just overtaken Clement Attlee as the longest-serving Labour Prime Minister.

Attlee will be remembered for a universal health care scheme that was the envy of the world.

Unless he gets a grip Blair will go down as the man who threw away the ideals on which his party was founded.
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Title Annotation:Comment
Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Aug 10, 2003
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