Nothing says happy new year quite like a laboured and mirthless joke about NHS privatisation.

So big End Game thanks to London Health Emergency, those funsters, for sending us a new board game to ease the January blues.

The group, who are celebrating 30 years of constant panic this year, have devised “Hospital Mi££ions” (see what they did there?) to entertain and educate us all.

“There’s always more profit to be made from sickness!” hectors the game’s strapline. Private finance initiatives, commissioning support, private hospital wings and even the King’s Fund (is nothing sacred?) are all mercilessly lampooned.

“You are approved by Monitor as a ‘Qualified Provider’. Throw a six to purchase any available contract”, reads one square on the board. Ho ho. “You are bought up by an offshore hedge fund. Go to New Financial Year.”

You get the idea.

Boxing Day must have been a hoot round their house – we had thought that it was only Monitor staff who didn’t like Monopoly, but apparently not.