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NHS Lanarkshire celebrate 75th anniversary of the NHS

Published: Wednesday, 05 July 2023

NHS Lanarkshire celebrate 75th anniversary of the NHS

75th Anniversary of the NHS

NHS Lanarkshire has teamed up with partners at the University of Strathclyde to help celebrate the 75th anniversary of the NHS in Scotland.

The NHS was created on 5th July 1948 and celebrates its 75th birthday on 5th July 2023. 

In a suite of videos, which have been made available on social media, 75 years of health improvements are celebrated including vaccination, improvements in public health and improvements in technology.

Professor Eamonn Brankin, Associate Medical Director for NHS Lanarkshire said: “75 years ago, the NHS was created and everyone across the country suddenly had access to healthcare that was free at the point of use.

“The service was inundated by people seeking treatment for conditions that they had previously been too poor to afford treatment for.

“It can be easy to forget the journey the NHS has gone through and take for granted the free healthcare that is available to everyone in Scotland.

“At its heart, the core values of the NHS are still the same as it was when it was founded 75 years ago. To improve the health of society by making Scotland a better, healthier place for everyone.”

Each video released highlights how healthcare looked prior to the creation of the NHS and illustrates how these services have developed over time.

Matt Smith, Professor of Health History at University of Strathclyde, said: “There have been remarkable advances in medicine since the foundation of the NHS 75 years ago.  From surgeries and drugs to imaging technologies and new insights about health, the NHS has amazing tools at its disposal. 

“With these advancements have come heightened expectations about what the NHS can do for us.  But at the same time, the diseases that the NHS is faced with have also changed.  Although the emergence of HIV/AIDS and Covid-19 demonstrate that infectious diseases can still be devastating, it is chronic diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, autoimmune disease and mental illness, that health workers spend most of their time addressing. 

“In Scotland, we also face an ageing population and difficulties in recruiting enough NHS workers to address with their health problems.

“Our challenge now is to implement the public health insights also gained over the last 75 years and start doing a much better job of preventing these diseases.  In particular, we need to tackle the socioeconomic inequalities that all too often result in health inequalities.

“We need to give the NHS a better platform on which it can take advantage of all the medical advancements since 1948.   If we are able to do this, then our grandchildren will see a healthy and robust NHS thriving in another 75 years.” 

To mark the birthday celebrations, hospitals across Lanarkshire will also be lit up blue on the night of Wednesday 5 July.

The videos can be viewed at: https://www.nhslanarkshire.scot.nhs.uk/nhs-lanarkshire-celebrate-75th-anniversary-of-the-nhs/