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King and Queen celebrate NHS’ 75th birthday

Charles and Camilla were given a cradle-to-the-grave tour of the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh and met members of staff, patients and the public.

The Queen joked she “shared a birthday” with the National Health Service as she celebrated the institution’s 75th milestone with the King.

Charles and Camilla toured the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh meeting dozens of medical staff, patients and the public to mark the anniversary.

The NHS – the world’s best-known health system – came into being on July 5 1948.

Queen Camilla speaks with patients
Queen Camilla met with patients and staff during a visit to the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh (Jane Barlow/PA)

It was launched by then health secretary Aneurin Bevan at Park Hospital in Manchester – today known as Trafford General Hospital.

When the Queen chatted to a group of elderly patients, she commented about the NHS’ anniversary: “I’m 75, I’m the same age as the NHS – we share a birthday.”

Nearby the King also spoke to some of the Infirmary’s oldest patients and quipped about his age – 74.

He said: “You get to the age I am, things don’t work as well as they used to,” before joining his wife to cut an NHS birthday cake.

King and Queen cut cake
Charles and Camilla celebrated the NHS’ milestone by cutting a 75th birthday cake (Jane Barlow/PA)

The King and his wife were given a cradle-to-the-grave tour of the hospital, meeting maternity staff from midwives to obstetricians, before they chatted to those caring for patients coming towards the end of their lives.

In the hospital’s reception, a huge crowd was waiting to see the King and Queen after word got around they were visiting.

Camilla stopped to talk to doctors Zack Hassan, 28, and Robert Cronshaw, 29.

Dr Hassan, who when not working on the wards hosts the Healthy Discussions podcast, said: “She said to us, ‘doctors are looking younger every year’ and that’s something I hear from my patients.”

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