I WAS interested to read last week’s editorial comment along with the criticism by Tom Kelly that the Mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) had not fought hard enough to source additional NHS funding.

As was acknowledged by Dr Caroline Dollery, the cupboard is bare and tens of millions of debt have to be cleared before the CCG gets the funding it needs.

He doesn’t seem to have realised that it is not a case of being left behind, CCGs across England are struggling with similar debt and having to make similar financial decisions.

Whilst I cannot, in all honesty, defend Mid and South Essex’s plans which will fundamentally change health provision in Essex and leaves many questions unanswered given the inadequacy of funding, shortage of GPs and the on-going chaos in social care, the blame does not lie with the CCG.

It lies with the government which has pursued deliberate policies to starve the NHS in order to forge a path towards private provision.

Even if more funding were available do the public want it to go into private hands for profit instead of patient care?

Tom Kelly is missing the elephant in the room.

Equally, I wonder if he has understood how far we are down that road.

The N has already been taken out of the NHS and it now exists as 44 distinct geographical areas which have the responsibility for delivering Simon Steven’s (a former executive in the US firm United Health) five year forward view.

We’ve had sustainability and transformation plans/partnerships followed by accountable care organisations which have now morphed into integrated care systems all of which are about dismantling the health service in England and eventually privatising it.

The NHS doesn’t need hope or a miracle it needs to be restored to a publicly owned, funded, managed and delivered service.

Prue Plumridge, London Road, Maldon