The concept is simplicity itself: each and every one of us, from Prime Minister to traffic wardens, has a National Insurance Number. What I propose is that £1, and £1 only, is deducted from our pay packets. A draw of N.I. numbers would then be conducted each week with 40% of this ‘direct funding’ allocated as prize money, with the remaining 60% given to bolster funding for the N.H.S. There may be a confidentiality problem to overcome with the publicising of winning personal N.I. numbers but I am sure with some form of discrete censoring this could be overcome.
If only £30-million was raised each week through this scheme, and with £12-million used for the State Prize draw, £18-million would be raised weekly to aid funding for the N.H.S. Annually this would amount to approximately £860-million.
Although a large amount of brow-wrinkling and crossing of t’s and dotting of i’s will be required before this scheme can generate funding for the N.H.S., and I dare say a similar amount of people, doubtless opposition M.P.’s and those who would prefer the N.H.S. to fall into ruin rather than have its funding bolstered by State aided, and compulsory, gambling, there is far more than a germ of an idea within the concept of this proposal.
With our withdrawal from the E.U. this country needs a project that will both unite all sides of the political and social spectrum and that will be the envy of the rest of the world. Returning the National Health Service to the pinnacle of the medical world is just that project.
The cost to the poorest households will be £48 a year. It will be the same for the richest households. Where my proposal is fairer than the present Lotto draw is that the rich have no better chance of winning a prize than the poorest. This scheme does not only help fund the N.H.S. it will spread wealth to all sectors of society. I would propose a £5-million top prize each week – who needs to win more? - with 3 £1-million prizes, 5 £500,000 prizes and so on down to smaller prizes of £50. This is just a thought. What I am saying is no rollovers. No £50-million prizes. This is about saving the N.H.S. not avarice.
People can continue to support Lotto, if they should choose, and the good causes that benefit from it, and of course as this proposal is based on taking £1 from everyone’s pay packet it gives an extra incentive for the long-term unemployed to actively seek work.
This proposal may be naïve in concept, and confidentiality may be problematic, but I have not heard of an easier method of saving the N.H.S. and should at least be debated by both Parliament and the public.
I would be grateful to receive feedback, both positive and negative, on this proposal, especially as the figures I have used are speculative and may be either too optimistic or as I suspect an underestimation, and no one should repeat them as if as they are definitive. I leave ‘definitive’ to experts.