AS we celebrate the 70years of our national health service, our attention turns as ever to those at the frontline – the GPs, specialists, surgeons, consultants, nurses and midwives. 

It is these people who are the sharp end of the critical moments in our lives – the passing of loved ones, the critical diagnosis and the birth of our children.

But to make the health service exist and provide a platform for these people to perform there are countless numbers lumped into the catch-all phrase ‘health support, administration and other allied professions’.

Catch-all it maybe – catchy it ain’t.

Perhaps the reason we don’t start a list of these great people is the fear of missing some out. They are all stars and that’s not a good enough reason to stop shouting about them.

Just a few are these are the dieticians, physiotherapists, pharmacists all of who can make a difference between being discharged home or yet another day in a hospital bed. The learning disability or children’s therapists who make such a huge impact on people’s lives.

And there are so many others, the countless volunteers who cheerily porter patients around, the cleaners who make sure we don’t succumb to infection on the ward, the kitchen staff feeding the army, and the patients.

In among all of those are the service managers and directors (and non-execs), the ones who keep the show on the road, the staff in the comms office, the HR folk looking for enough skilled staff to provide the best care, the IT service making sure the systems don’t fall over, the finance department making sure staff and local suppliers get paid.

The NHS is a huge machine but if one cog breaks it has a knock on effect down the line.

When we come to celebrate NHS70 on 5th July, of course I will remember the amazing Nottingham midwife who delivered my third child, with one eye on the job (boy) in hand, literally, and another on the Forest score as he came into the world at 3.45pm on a Saturday.

I will remember our GP who spotted the danger signs, then the whole diabetes team at Nottingham University Hospitals who supported us all when my 13year old was told he had Type1 diabetes.

But I will also raise a glass to those unsung heroes, who won’t be in the limelight and never are, but who keep the show on the road.. you are all NHS heroes.