Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/928/24058
From The Socialist newspaper, 7 December 2016
NHS: Stop the Tory vandals
Elaine Brunskill, Socialist Party Northern secretary
Tory cuts are aimed in part at destroying public confidence to soften the service up for privatisation, ward photo Yuya Tamai (Creative Commons), scissors photo Wikimedia Commons, composite James Ivens (Click to enlarge)
The Tory plan to privatise the NHS via the back door has given way to smashing in via the main entrance.
Their next attack is NHS England's shadowy 'sustainability and trans-formation plans' (STPs). Under these ruthless schemes, the government aims to make a further £22 billion of NHS cuts by 2020, with dire consequences for patient care.
If you haven't heard of these proposals - don't be too hard on yourself. Despite their huge impact, a survey of 310 members of doctors' union BMA revealed a third had never heard of STPs.
Meanwhile, the NHS is still suffering from the hammer blows inflicted over 30 years by successive Tory and Labour governments.
The Guardian recently reported that seriously ill children were having to be transported long distances in order to receive intensive care. This included London where all the beds for paediatric intensive care across seven hospitals were full to capacity.
The number of patients waiting for over an hour for an ambulance to arrive has almost tripled over the last two years. And the nightmare isn't necessarily over once the ambulance turns up, as many patients have to wait for hours in the ambulance for beds to become available.
Undoubtedly this callous Tory government hopes the severity of the cuts will turn people against the NHS, making handing it to their big business friends seem the only option available. However, even with all its current problems, the NHS remains incredibly popular.
People understand that every local attack needs to be fought. Campaigns to save local services are springing up in towns and cities across Britain.
In Leicester, tens of thousands have signed a petition to save the Glenfield heart unit. Huddersfield's campaign to save its A&E organised a huge demo earlier this year. A campaign in North Tyneside against proposals to close walk-in centres is about to mushroom.
These local campaigns will be a springboard for the national 'It's Our NHS' demo on 4 March 2017 in London. Now is the time to fight and fight again!
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In The Socialist 7 December 2016:
What we think
No more concessions to Labour right!
Socialist Party news and analysis
Fight for a socialist Brexit
Conservatives humiliated in Richmond
Newham council to sack up to 1,300
Slump in unfair dismissal cases - scrap tribunal fees!
Workers can fight Uber-style care
Them & Us
Food banks feature
Food banks and the real Daniel Blakes
NHS crisis and fightback
NHS: Stop the Tory vandals
Hundreds protest the decimation of Devon NHS
Massive support in Stoke for action to save the NHS
Health campaigners in Yorkshire protest "slash and trash plans"
International socialist news and analysis
Victory at Standing Rock: US authorities agree to re-route oil pipeline
Spain: Government forced back by Student Union mobilisations
Italy: Establishment routed - workers alternative needed
Portugal: No to witch-hunts - fight the capitalists not socialists
Austria: Far right temporarily halted
Sudan: General strike in defiance of regime
Socialist Party workplace news
Durham TAs force Labour to suspend pay cuts
Protest against Glasgow Labour's scab workforce plan to defeat Unison strike
Crossrail action in defence of victimised union rep
Unison members barely earning the living wage in some universities
Sacked bakers' union rep Kumaran Bose calls for living wage 'protection'
Workplace news in brief
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Bolton council gives £300k to solicitors while making swingeing cuts
Reading TUSC writes to Labour councillors to demand cuts fight
John Sharpe: 1953-2016
Obituary: John Sharpe: 1953-2016
The Socialist 7 December 2016 |
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