A pic and should healthcare be free?

I took this photo of a church on Union St this morning because I found the colours really striking. The blue-grey of the sky and the gentle sunlight shining on the church spire made me want to whip out my camera and capture it as I raced to a 9am appointment.

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I went to the dentist this week and it cost me £4.64. And that included two x-rays. That’s just ridiculous. Why is it so cheap? No wonder the NHS is broke. I’m used to paying $100+ for a dental check-up with x-rays. The GP here is completely free too. My GP in New Zealand usually charged about $50.

I’m not sure what my views on this are. I’m used to paying for these things so it doesn’t seem unreasonable to expect people to pay for these services when they can afford it. But then I guess it’s hard to manage a system where some have to pay and some don’t. I really don’t know what the answer is. Wait, yes I do. The answer is bike lanes of course 🙂 Think how much money the NHS would save if there was some decent cycling infrastructure in the UK. The Christchurch City Council just published a report which claims that for every $1 spent on cycling infrastructure, $8 will be returned to the community in the form of reduced traffic congestion, health and environmental benefits.

What do other people think? Should the dentist and doctor be free for all?