Someone in this country is twice as likely to die from a heart attack as someone in France.
Letter to doctors in England
So says Dave. As is so often the case, politicians never tell you where their data comes from - especially if it is a bit suspect. These data are, of course, very suspect. Every doctor knows that there is something odd about data on heart attacks from France. It even has a name: the French paradox. Dave's researchers have obviously trawled about for data that enable our prime minister to slag off our National Health Service in a vain attempt to justify yet another reorganisation. It cuts no ice with doctors because we all know that the country he has chosen to compare us with is a paradox.
But Dr Grumble is also prepared to play this childish game. Let's look at the trends. They are nicely depicted in the graph below.
By next year our heart attack deaths will be lower than those in France. OK. Dr Grumble knows. There is more to this than health care. But this example should never have been used to slag off our NHS. Two can play at this game, Dave.
Oh, Dr Grumble nearly forgot. We have achieved this on less spending on health care than France. According to the latest figures France spent 28% more on health than the UK. Doesn't that bust another of your myths, Dave?