Haxby Group’s 11 GP surgeries will be staying open on Friday 8 May and will also be marking VE Day.
We will be opening our surgeries on VE day – not because the NHS have declared it a normal working day, but also because we wanted to be there for our patients and communities, as a sign of respect and thanks to the generation that gifted us the NHS, and to be a rock for all of them.
Seventy-five-years-ago, a generation was coming to the end of five years of War. Five years of restrictions on normal life, of constraints on liberty, of strict rationing and of enormous personal and collective risk.
As part of the NHS, Haxby Group has been caring for generations of people affected by that War. They are, of course, the patients at most risk from the latest threat to their wellbeing from the coronavirus pandemic.
In 1948, when the NHS was founded, we wanted to be a nation “fit for heroes”. It was felt that those who had given their all, their youth, their health, during the War deserved to be supported and looked after. The link between WW2 and the NHS is without doubt. Had the allies not been victorious, had previous generations not stood against a terrible tyranny and in many cases paid a terrible price, we doubt that there would be an NHS with universal care, free at the point of need.
Haxby Group’s Managing Partner John McEvoy, who served in the Armed Forces until 2002, said: “VE day is also about acknowledging the people who left us this magnificent inheritance of the NHS, and its principles, through their personal sacrifices.
“We need to remember and reflect on the bombing raids of civilian targets in the UK which lasted roughly a year and killed about 32,000 people during the Blitz. At that time this was roughly 0.007% of the population, mostly in large cities.
“As now, the public rallied together to withstand the terrible threat, one that was outside of their control. Volunteers stepped in where needed, but all looked to the emergency and care services for support, leadership and to be their rock.”