AS the General Election promises rack up from all parties the slogan is “more money for hospitals”, which is obviously laudable, but it is one which misses the point of the NHS’s problems and fails yet again to address them.

The balance of NHS funding has moved inexorably from primary care (community) to secondary care (hospitals) such that only seven per cent of NHS funding in Scotland goes to primary care against a perceived wisdom need of 11 per cent. Nicola Sturgeon stated in Holyrood in 2012 that she would shout from the rooftops the Dewar Report on the Health Service and yet we are allowing primary care to fail – especially since the disastrous 2004 GP Contract – leading to massive A&E overload and excess admissions to hospital beds which can’t be freed because of the underfunding of primary care and social care. Politicians and voters please realise that throwing money at hospitals unquestioningly creates situations such as the two flagship Glasgow and Edinburgh hospitals.

Health care needs better understanding and focus rather than the vacuous promises.

Dr Iain Mcnicol, Port Appin.

I HAVE to say I really do not understand the election campaigns. One party offers this for billions of pounds for the NHS, the other party offers that for billions for the NHS. Then next day this party offers billion for education and the other party does likewise and so on and so on. Do the politicians really think the general public is so stupid to be taken in by this blatant, lying electioneering?

As Bill Clinton's campaign famously said, “it’s the economy, stupid”. If any of the political parties want to deliver their promises they really need to explain how we are going to afford it. Sadly there seems to be zero dialogue about the economy.

If we really want a world-class NHS, Education system, social services and the like we need to have a thriving economy. So why is the dialogue so pathetically thin on thus topic? Get the economy booming and everything else will fall into place, stupid.

Ian McNair, Glasgow G12.

I FIND myself getting angry when I read or hear continual criticism of Health Secretary Jeane Freeman for what appear to be structural defects in hospitals commissioned before she became Health Secretary (“Freeman to seek answers over report on children’s hospital”, The Herald, November 21). I find it rich indeed that any politician can be blamed for structural defects in new buildings where the blame should fall totally on the contractor and, on the NHS’s side, the consultant engineers who signed off on the buildings concerned.

Neither politicians nor doctors are experts in construction. The responsibility of the NHS is to identify their needs and that of the politicians (read Government) to find the funds to meet those needs – not so easy after nine years of the UK Government’s ill-chosen policy of austerity which has left us with three times the national debt it inherited, multitudinous food banks and a significant increase in poverty.

The politicians and NHS, once advised of the effects of the structural defects incorporated into the hospitals by the appointed contractors and passed by the highly remunerated consultants, are left to minimise the damage inflicted on patients and their families and in my humble opinion, in the case of the Sick Children’s Hospital in Edinburgh, that is exactly what Ms Freeman did. Glasgow appears to be an ongoing saga but I would hope that once the political hoo-ha settles down and reviews are complete that the real culprits are brought to justice and punished severely for their part in creating disaster and anguish from what should have been positive additional resources to our NHS.

Ernest Wastell, Meigle, Perthshire.

JOHN Mathieson, your correspondent from North Berwick (Letters, November 22) is facing a problem that unfortunately is not uncommon.

Here in Argyll and Bute, although administration is by NHS Highland we are reliant almost entirely on Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board (GGCHB) and unlike his situation we are unlikely to have a new hospital, and whereas he has the A1 to contend with, we have the ferries, the weather and GGCHB’s apparently random computer appointment system sending you to a multitude of different facilities at crazily different appointment times

It was once remarked to me that this centralisation was the best for patient care and if we insisted that health care was done locally that would be where you would die, but now looking at the obituaries he was not wrong. Everyone unfortunate to expire does so in the same place and it’s rarely local.

Thomas Law, Sandbank, Argyll and Bute.