Readers' letters - July 17

A correspondent says patients must not be forgotten about when it comes to Brexit
A correspondent says patients must not be forgotten about when it comes to Brexit

Don’t forget health issues when leaving the Union

The ambition of the Brexit White Paper is fine – but we await the execution.
Patients in the UK and Europe need to know that they will get their drugs on time, that vital medical research will not be disrupted and that they will continue to get the healthcare they need while on holiday or travelling for work.
These are not theoretical possibilities, they are real risks which can and must be resolved in the negotiations. We have consistently called for assurances on all these matters and we welcome the government’s clear ambition to deal with them.
We also welcome the commitment to maintaining the highest standards of health protection after the UK leaves the EU.
Maximum co-operation to control infectious diseases and other public health threats is a ‘no brainer’.
But these are complex and wide-ranging negotiations and there is always a danger that health issues are not kept to the fore.
We should be under no illusions of the consequences for patients if we fail to plan properly and do not reach a good agreement.
That could result in a significant threat to the health of both UK and EU citizens.
Planning is under way at the centre of government, but it will be important for the sake of patients that NHS hospitals, clinics and community services are all prepared for every possible scenario.
Niall Dickson
Co-chairman
Brexit Health Alliance

We need to
be practical


I’ve been surprised at the froth I’ve heard recently from some Brexiteers, many of whom I used to respect, but who are now showing their true colours as idealists who won’t support a practical Brexit deal, as set out in the Government’s recent White Paper.
As a keen, practical, Brexiteer, I welcome the support that Michael Gove and Andrea Leadsom have given for the White Paper.
We‘ve done the easy bit – we’ve had the binary choice (i.e. the referendum).
Now comes the difficult bit, actually implementing the complexities of Brexit.
I consider myself to be a Brexit Realist.
I therefore cautiously welcome Theresa May’s White Paper on the future relationship with the EU. I have read the whole document and it deals with the main things that bothered me (and, I suspect, many people) about the UK’s membership of the EU.
Brexit was all about having the right to control your own destiny as a sovereign, independent nation.
Under the White Paper, we’ll be regaining the powers to do precisely that.
The extent to which those repatriated powers are exercised will be a choice of Government.
We’ll be able to co-operate as much or as little as we like with the EU.
The White Paper is a very clever document, which is almost a blueprint for how the EU ought to work, i.e.
to allow countries to co-operate and trade, with
no loss of sovereignty.
We will be able to
develop trade with the rest of the world and, as that trade grows in size, we can get tougher with the EU on any new rules they try to introduce.
Wouldn’t it be a shame if an unholy alliance of Brexit Idealists and Remoaners scuppered this White Paper and left us with the uncertainties of a no-deal Brexit?
Tim Hunter
Address supplied

Farage as Brexit Secretary

Calamity May shows her tough side at Chequers by presenting the Cabinet with a ‘this is how it is going to be’ option.
The result? David Davis resigns and the whole process is in danger of collapse.
Nigel Farage would have been the best person to
replace David Davis as Brexit Secretary.
He got the whole thing going, and would have wrapped it up in a few weeks if meddling, muddling May had kept out of it.
Bernard Goldstein
via email

We don’t all want to go on the web

When are firms going to realise that not everyone owns a computer or, more importantly, want to go ‘on the web’. I am so sick of hearing the words “go to www etc” and this is after pressing one, two, three to get this final instruction and probably having held on the line for ages for this message.
Nowadays you can only be certain of a human voice when it is a scam call.
Edna Levi
Address supplied