The comedian Rufus Hound is planning to run for the European Parliament to campaign against the privatisation of the NHS.

The comedian, who announced his intention over the weekend, says he wants to preserve “one of the single greatest achievements of any civilisation”.

He has put himself forward as a candidate for the single-issue National Health Action party in the May poll.

They have repeatedly argued that changes amount to privatisation by the back door - a claim the government strongly denies.

Mr Hound, 34, who has previously campaigned for the Liberal Democrats, said he and his wife were moved to make a stand to ensure their anger towards the reforms, which took effect last April, did not dissipate into apathy.

“We did not want to become one of those people who whinge on and on, wringing hands and asking, ‘but why isn’t someone doing something?’” he wrote in a blog post.

“Big, rich, private healthcare companies have donated millions to the Conservative party and now they’re calling in the debt.”

The government argues that major NHS reforms were needed to find £20bn of efficiency savings at a time of increased demand.

Hound will run in the London constituency for the European parliamentary elections on 22 May this year.

He added that he also wants to protect the “incredible” NHS staff whose “capacity to care is a combination of vocation, education and genuine kindness”.