Blair's Next Move

Heading for a second term, the British Prime Minister must cope with a nation that's only half transformed

Just a few miles from central London, home to the spectacular new Tate Modern and million-dollar apartments that reflect the prosperous, optimistic side of Tony Blair's Britain, Paddy Brunton spent his final days in a rather different country. Brunton, 80, a former BBC electrician, developed blood clots in his heart and lungs in February. After an eight-hour wait for a bed, he was admitted to a 20-patient ward at the Whittington Hospital in north London, one of the top 40 in Britain.

Four nurses were supposed to be on duty, but because of staff shortages, there were often only two. Several...

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