Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 20 September 2007

NHS: Our message to Labour

Keep your 'Sicko' views to yourself

A REPORT has been published for the right-wing think tank, the Kings Fund, by Sir Derek Wanless, former adviser to Gordon Brown. If accepted, it will be another nail in the coffin for a tax-funded, free at the point of use, health service.

Lois Austin

His report questions whether or not the government can continue to fully fund the NHS given the demographic changes of the next 20 years.

He blames pay and price inflation for using up nearly half of the extra 43 billion increase in NHS funding since 2002.

He completely ignores the billions spent on treating NHS patients privately instead of investing that money for the long term into NHS resources, or the fact that the NHS is ripped off by the pharmaceutical companies and spends more on drugs and equipment than any other country in Western Europe.

And incredibly he doesn't even mention the millions going out of NHS budgets for patient care and staff wages to pay PFI consortiums. And a new report by the University of Edinburgh states that PFI costs to the NHS are to increase five-fold over the next eight years from 470 million to 2.3 billion.

The report also shows that hospital trusts who signed up for PFI schemes worth more than 50 million in 2005/6 are confronted with an average increase of 4.4% of their income going to meet these payments.

This is where the money's gone. How dare Wanless try to blame NHS staff, the majority of whom are on low wages and have now been awarded an insulting pay award below the rate of inflation?

And it is because of these soaring costs and pressure from central government to cut spending that NHS hospital trusts are making yet more cuts. The government wants to reduce NHS funding by a further 1 billion over the next year. Swansea NHS Trust says it faces a 15 million deficit unless it closes 86 beds and cuts around 750 jobs (see article below).

So where is all this leading? To a trimmed-down market-driven NHS ready for privatisation. Patricia Hewitt told us when she lectured at the LSE that the NHS would remain 'free at the point of use' whether or not the services were provided by private health care companies.

This is pie in the sky. You can't control what you don't own. A parallel private service is being developed using public money and it is opening the door to a fully two-tier system and private health care insurance.

Already, insurance companies are offering deals to people for drugs that are rationed or unavailable on the NHS and insurance to those who have to wait more than six weeks for treatment on the NHS.

One brief look at the reviews of Michael Moore's new film Sicko and the despicable treatment the clear-up workers from the 9/11 attacks received makes the horrors of the US's private health care system all too clear.

We don't need the NHS 'citizens' juries' proposed by health secretary Alan Johnson to show us what kind of health service we need. We know we have to fight the cuts and privatisation of the national health service.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.

In The Socialist 20 September 2007:

Nationalise the banks

Economy hits a rock

Crisis will hit north east jobs

Time for a new party

Socialist Students

Fight for a living grant

What do youth think?

Student Socialist: Issue 5 out now!

Studying on a low wage

Flexible hours? Suits you sir!

Socialist Party NHS campaign

NHS: Our message to Labour

Swansea - no more cuts for cash

Socialist Party news

Victory! Campaign saves nursery

Medway schools

Lobby demands asylum for Sadiq

Socialism 2007

Socialism 2007

Make Socialism 2007 an unforgettable weekend

TUC Conference

TUC conference: Workers defy Brown

Linking the struggles together

International socialist news and analysis

Egypt: Worker militancy shows pressing need for political voice

Socialist Party review

Consumed: How markets corrupt children, infantilise adults and swallow citizens whole

Workplace news and analysis

Remploy workers fight for jobs

Defend the Burslem 12

CWU: Further national action discussed


Home   |   The Socialist 20 September 2007   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:


triangleCapitalism fails NHS services in Liverpool: scrap PFI!

triangleCardiff East Socialist Party: NHS in crisis

triangleBuild for strikes to save NHS

triangleChildren need intensive care? We don't care!

triangleStand firm for socialist policies to stop Tory attacks


triangleThe Socialist inbox

triangleNorthern Ireland: Thousands of nurses continue to strike for better pay

triangleEnd profiteering from health - nationalise big pharma

triangleNorthern Ireland: Health workers take action


triangleNorthern Ireland: strike action by NHS workers

triangle300 NHS nurse suicides in seven years - fully fund our health service now!

triangleNon-fiction: 'Unhealthy Profits: PFI in the NHS'

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns


East London

A win against academisation in east London



Make a stand: set legal no-cuts council budgets


Tamil Solidarity

Building Tamil Solidarity with youth and the unions


Royal Mail

Royal Mail workers to reballot for strike action


South Yorkshire

"If you think bus and rail services are crap, sign our petition to take them back"


The Socialist

Westex strikers read the Socialist



Belfast Hovis workers' all-out strike



Renewing the left in PCS



Capitalism fails NHS services in Liverpool: scrap PFI!


Young people

Young people who voted for Corbyn's manifesto will now ask... How can we win those ideas?



Massive Scottish independence demo marks new stage in struggle



London: Protesters return to oppose Middle East war



Cladding scandal: Government steps up defence of landlords



Nottingham: Youth protest against Barclays 64 million fossil-fuel investments



Westex Carpet strike reaches two month mark

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777


Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041



Alphabetical listing

January 2020