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From The Socialist newspaper, 20 February 2008

Private clinics fail

PRIVATE CLINICS such as the independent sector treatment centres (ISTCs) are able to haul in a guaranteed income even if they treat hardly any patients. Such clinics are being paid in full even though, a recent survey suggests, they do as little as half of the work specified in their contracts.

The government set up such centres in a flourish to do minor surgery and diagnostic tests, claiming that this would cut waiting lists. However, the survey showed that just four of the 25 clinics set up in the first wave of clinics are doing enough work; some were doing as little as half their contracted deals.

The first group, unlike NHS hospitals, are given lucrative contracts that guarantee them an income. The government forces public hospitals to 'compete', both with each other and with the private sector, then pays them on the basis of how many people are treated.

Clinics such as ISTCs have a protected life within the NHS while the public sector has to fight off constant attempts to cut back on services through harsh financial requirements.

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In The Socialist 20 February 2008:

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Troops out of Iraq now!


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Socialist Party Marxist analysis

Northern Rock - Labour's reluctant nationalisation

1918-2008: Clause 4 and nine decades of workers' struggles

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Socialist Party NHS campaign

London's health care under further attack

Private clinics fail

Hospitals "stacking" patients

Fighting back and building a demo

"Not making sufficient profit"


Socialist Students

Universities in crisis: Fees favour the rich

Exeter students fight privatisation

Nottingham defends democracy


International socialist news and analysis

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Greece: Second general strike in two months

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Socialist Party review

Science, Marxism and the big bang


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Victory for council street wardens


Workplace news in brief

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Marching against single status

Solidarity with Pakistan workers


 

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