UK’s Labour leader, Keir Starmer, is in Essex this morning promising to get the NHS “back on its feet” if his party is elected. It’s a bold promise given the NHS, according to Starmer’s NHS-employed wife, is currently “on its face”. The goal is to reduce deaths from cancer, suicide and heart disease; cut waiting times; see A&E patients faster; grow the workforce; ban junk food ads before 9pm; and stick to existing targets set by the current government. Most of the promises have a deadline of 2030, which would be five years after Labour took power if it won – a target the Nuffield Trust chief executive has said is “unlikely”. Starmer has said the NHS conundrum can’t just be solved with extra funding but he will still need some cash. He has already identified closing tax loopholes on private equity and abolishing non-dom tax status as two funding methods. Any other costs will have to be met in the context of an estimated £7 billion shortfall in the overall NHS budget, before taking into account the government’s latest £4 billion pay offer.