NHS Update

Its seems that, in order to meet government cuts, the NHS has so severely cutback on Nurses that it is now having to pay huge sums for agency nurses.  Clearly agency nurses cannot provide continuity of care and the cost of agency nurses is extortionate and of course represents yet another funneling of tax payers money into the hands of the private sector. In fact it seems that a major  beneficiary might be Tory donor  Lord Ashcroft.

Meanwhile, here in Salisbury, a freedom of information request has been submitted to Salisbury NHS Trust requesting further information on the supply of medical agency staff to the trust from 2009 to 2012 to including the following information: 1 Cost to the trust/authority; 2 Grade; 3 Supplier/Agency; 4 Speciality.

It will be interesting to see the result of the FOI request.

NHS pays £1,600 a day for nurses as agency use soars (D. Telegraph)

Lord Ashcroft’s Co. makes £7,000,000 supplying agency staff to the NHS as Lansley sacks 28,610 staff (Éoin Clarke)

Freedom of Information Request

It looks like people are finally paying attention to the government’s Health & Social Care Bill – let’s hope it’s not too late.

According to independent and objective comparisons, the NHS is one of the most successful health care systems on the planet. This is despite political interference and persistent underfunding for most of its existence.  Just think how much more successful the NHS would have been if it had been consistently funded at the same level as comparable countries and had politician’s efforts simply gone into further improvements in care and eliminating the undoubted problems that exist.

The government’s Health and Social Care Bill is hugely complex, making it very difficult for ordinary people to understand the consequences. However, finally, it is becoming clear that the proposals:

  • remove the Duty of the Secretary of State to secure and provide comprehensive health care
  • will result in a top down, hugely expensive and complex reorganisation of the NHS that was not in any party election manifesto
  • are already having a negative influence on service provision and waiting times
  • do not address any of the real issues, particularly how we cope with an ageing population
  • are designed to privatise the provision of services and encourage the profitable parts of the service to be taken over by international health care companies who will make decisions that prioritise their shareholder’s interests and will channel huge sums of tax payers’ money into their profits and CEO bonuses.  (Many of these companies already have a disastrous track record)
  • will lead to a US style health care system led by and for the benefit of insurance and private health care companies

If you doubt any of the above, please do your own research.  But beware of what is clearly double speak and spin from the Health Minister and from organisations that stand to benefit handsomely from the proposals.  We desperately need decisions based on facts, evidence and rational debate. If we care about the NHS we need to pay attention and get involved – it will soon be too late and there will be no going back.

Essential reading for anyone who cares about the NHS: http://bit.ly/z8X7Ge

Here is a set of short video clip from Dr Hamish Meldrum  (Chair of the BMA at the Save our NHS rally): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CpC9Ug-rLcI&feature=related

David Owen on the NHS Bill (at the Save our NHS Rally): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jx0sJtCtXJw&feature=related

“it will last as long as there are folk left with the faith to fight for it. A short speech by  Clive Peedell, co-chair of the NHS Consultants’ Association – someone with faith and prepared to fight.

Time to pull the plug on this unloved health bill – Deliberately or not, the NHS is being set up for failure:http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/the-staggers/2012/01/health-bill-nhs-private-care

An interesting article: Will the health bill increase private activity in the NHS?:http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/reality-check-with-polly-curtis/2012/jan/19/health-bill-private-patients

The Health Service is being privatised! I don’t remember voting for that, was there a referendum?

Cost of NHS reorganisation and the rise in Waiting Lists: http://www.dropthebill.net/news Why isn’t this in the news????

“The health bill will create ‘genuine opportunities’ for the private sector to take over large chunks of the NHS”, the health minister in charge of steering the reform bill through the House of Lords claimed.  Former banker Lord Howe told an audience of private sector providers that though the NHS ‘will not give up their patients easily’, there were opportunities for those wishing to ‘enter the fray’.  ‘The Pulse’, Jan 2012

Bad science concerning NHS competition is being used to support the controversial Health and Social Care Bill

The Health Service is being privatised! I don’t remember voting for that, was there a referendum?

Government ministers have such close ties with the private health care industry in Britain, America and Europe that it verges on legalised corruption.  The previous Labour government started the process of allowing private health care providers a central role in planning the privatisation of health care. Now the current Conservative Government has enthusiastically escalated the rate at which the NHS is being privatised.  What is happening now will soon be irreversible. It was not in the Labour, Lib Dem or  Conservative Party manifestos  – there is no democratic mandate and yet it is happening now, they are not waiting for the current Health & Social Care Bill to be passed.  Here is some of the evidence:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zrb3rJoLu9g&feature=youtube_gdata_player

http://www.powerbase.info/index.php/Health_Portal

http://www.lrb.co.uk/v33/n18/james-meek/its-already-happened

http://www.guardian.co.uk/profile/allysonpollock

http://bengoldacre.posterous.com/article-the-plot-against-the-nhs-opendemocrac

http://www.opendemocracy.net/ourkingdom/colin-leys/plot-against-nhs