The NHS, though battered and bruised, is still worth the fight.

Staff keep the NHS going despite the privatisers, and despite the government.

Campaigners are winning some battles.

The strikers at LWH won, well done.

Well done to all who are fighting for the NHS, and especially to the victory in Ealing where plans for major closures have been withdrawn!  Let us hope these victories give courage to all who support the NHS and better the pay and working conditions for staff. Let Ealing’s victory give courage to all who fight for our hospitals. Campaign groups for the NHS are   growing. Come and join us!

The privatisation model this government and the NHS national administrators are working on is not just of making the sick pay for their individual treatment. That “patient pay system” is is starting in various ways, including charging migrants. Patient pay and refusal to treat without payment will get the biggest backlash. Right now, their kind of privatisation is more diverting the huge taxpayer spend on health into the pockets of big business.

Just one example of the shift from public wealth to private gain was seen in 2017 when NHS plasma supplies were sold off by Tories for £230 million, then sold on to a Chinese company for £820 million. Nearly £500million profit that was yours and mine, but went into private pockets.

The biggest privatisation of the NHS is underway. The break up of the national NHS into 44 STP or accountable care areas is a precurser to the privatisation of the whole system, a step further in the privatisation process than the contracts given out previously, huge though they were. Campaigners and trade unions face their biggest battles ever, Increasingly workers in outsourced companies are taking action against the privatising companies who are not meeting NHS pay levels, (and NHS pay is are low enough already).

We send solidarity to the strikers at HMRC cleaners and to AFG care workers whose nightwork pay has been cut.

The NHS was founded to be

  • Free at the point of need
  • Funded from taxation
  • A national service
  • Not for profit
  • A service for everyone; a truly universal service
  • A comprehensive service, providing the best available treatment for all

This original model of health care is the most cost effective and most
efficient form of healthcare service delivery in the world. It was responsible for dramatically improving women’s lives and reducing infant and maternal mortality. It is much less expensive, and more effective to the nation than the US insurance model. We cannot afford this government and the NHS national administrators who are closely linked to private companies. Out sourcing, PFI and financially unstable outsourcing firms like Interserve, are only good for the international health corporations.

There are real dangers in the cuts in funding that reaches the hospitals and primary health care;
The UK has also slipped down international league tables for infant mortality and is now 15th out of 19comparable countries”

In a recent study that compared access to and quality of health care in 195 countries by analysing ‘health care-amenable mortality’ – ie, mortality rates from causes that should not be fatal if effective health care is in place – the UK is ranked 30th out of 195 countries – its overall score was similar to Portugal and Malta but lower than comparable countries like Germany, The Netherlands, Spain and Sweden.

We also have fewer doctors per head of population than other comparable EU countries.

The number of beds in the NHS is dangerously low, as many readers will have seen with their own eyes;
The UK, for example, has 2.7 hospital beds per 1000 population compared to an EU average of 5.2 – far lower than Germany (8.2) and France (6.2) but similar to Ireland (2.6) and Sweden (2.5). Although this might be seen as a sign of efficiency (indeed the declining number of hospital beds in the UK has been partly due to medical advances that have shortened length of stay in hospital and a shift in the model of care that means people with learning disabilities, mental illness and the longer-term care of older people occurs in community settings) there are significant concerns about high levels of bed occupancy in hospitals and the problems this causes.”

Every NHS hospital in the land, and all public and community health services, require major new investment for day-to-day running.  Meanwhile much needed money is being squandered on outsourcing, PFI and privatisation.

Please get involved and fight for the NHS, fight against privatisation, for keeping NHS funding for the NHS, not letting it leak out to the private sector.

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