Doyle, Barry M. (2010) Labour and hospitals in three Yorkshire towns: Middlesbrough, Leeds, Sheffield, 1919-1938. Social History of Medicine, 23 (2). pp. 374-392. ISSN 0951-631X

In the debates over the politics of National Health Service foundation, there has been little
investigation of the attitudes of the inter-war labour movement to a state-run hospital system. In
particular, there has been limited assessment of views outside parliament in provincial Labour parties
and trade unions. Drawing on a case study of Middlesbrough, Leeds and Sheffield, this article examines
the politics of hospital provision prior to the National Health Service (NHS). It focuses on the involvement
of the labour movement in hospital provision within localities and on the extent to which the dominant
form of labour politics—labourist or socialist—shaped hospital policy. It suggests that, in the heavy
industrial towns of Middlesbrough and Sheffield, close involvement with voluntary hospitals through
workers contributory schemes dampened the enthusiasm for a state system. However, such a policy
was heavily promoted by socialists in more economically diverse Leeds.

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