As the NHS approaches its 70th Birthday (the 5th July 2018), we at Optimum Medical are taking the time to celebrate the achievements of one of the UK’s most loved institutions! We wouldn’t be where we are today, as a company or as individuals, without the NHS watching our backs. So today, 70 years from the day a young Sylvia Diggory, the first NHS patient, met with Aneurin Bevan, the health secretary and mastermind behind the operation, we’ll see how far it’s come!
Early Days of the NHS
On 5th July in 1948 at the Park Hospital in Manchester (now known as Trafford General Hospital), the vision of bringing doctors, nurses, pharmacists, opticians, and dentists under one free, universal system was coming to light. The principles were clear, to introduce a health service, available to all, financed entirely through taxation – and 70 years later the idea is still going strong!
In no time at all, 2,751 of the 3,000 British Hospitals previously ran by local authorities and charities were nationalised and operated by the newly appointed NHS health boards. And if that figure doesn’t stager you, by the NHS launch day, a huge 94% of the public were enrolled!
Today the key principals are much the same, but the operation has ramped up dramatically. Compared to the post war aims of the 1950’s, todays NHS champions the likes of:
- Comprehensive childhood vaccination programme
- Free contraception for all women
- Raising the status of anaesthesia as a specialty
- Promoting patient centred care
- Access to in vitro fertilisation
- Championing evidence-based medicine
- Leading the world in cost effective healthcare
- Limiting commercial influence on patient care
Early Days at Optimum Medical
At Optimum Medical we owe a lot of our success to the NHS partnerships we’ve built along the way. We started life working with small hospices and private care homes, specialising in lubricant gels. We built on our knowledge quickly and worked with specialists to expand our range of lubricating gels and position ourselves as true specialist in the UK.
It wasn’t long before we began our international expansion, developing partnerships around the world and now our lubricating jellies are exported to over 60 countries around the world, spanning six continents.
Our range of catheterisation jellies provided us the opportunity to work closely with experts in the field of urology and from there grew our Ugo Urology range – featuring urinary drainage bag and valves, along with catheter and leg bag fixation devices.
To this day our partnership with the NHS remains strong, you’ll find our lubrication range in 97% of NHS hospitals.
Be a Part of the NHS Journey – Light Up Blue
On the evening of Thursday the 5th July, over 130 buildings, historic monuments, universities, and high-profile sites across the UK will be lighting up blue to mark the NHS’s 70th birthday. Here in Leeds, the home of Optimum Medical, we’re lighting up:
- Leeds Civic Hall
- Leeds First Direct Arena
- Leeds Town Hall
- Leeds University
- Bridgewater Place
- Merrion Centre
- Millennium Square
Check out the interactive NHS Light Up Blue Map to find out where your nearest blue building is going to be!
To celebrate this enormous occasion, at Optimum Medical we will be Lighting Up Blue on social media!