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From The Socialist newspaper, 22 February 2006

Daggers at NHS's heart

TONY BLAIR recently met and welcomed the NHS Partners Network, a coalition of 'independent' private sector healthcare companies who intend to privatise operations. Up to 40% of operations carried out by private firms will be performed for the NHS by 2008.

All this is a dagger at the health service's heart. Bringing in the private sector could fragment the NHS and force the closure of traditional NHS sites currently providing free services. The private healthcare sector hopes that the service gets ever more dependent on the private market.

Blair's enthusiasm for privatisation seems to know no limits despite the chaos brought to the NHS by the contracting out of home oxygen supplies to private companies this month.

One patient died after the new system broke down and emergency oxygen supplies took nine hours to arrive. Thousands of other people with breathing difficulties suffered as the privatised system under-estimated how many people would need the service.

The Socialist Party's new leaflet NHS - campaign to stop cuts and closures on the crisis in the health service covers the perils of privatisation. It also explains how huge deficits in the NHS Trusts are provoking big campaigns of patients and health workers to stop cutbacks and closures of wards or whole hospitals.

These local 'Save the NHS' campaigns need to be co-ordinated nationwide including with a high-profile national demonstration against cuts and privatisation within the health service.


Copies of the campaigning leaflet are available from Campaigns Department, Socialist Party, PO Box 24697, London E11 1YD.

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 22 February 2006:

Unite Save pensions, jobs and services

Fight for your future!

Campaign for a New Workers' Party conference

Gas price rise the biggest in history !

Daggers at NHS's heart

Why rural workers need socialism

Bush and Blair's total failure

Car workers fight layoffs

Trade wars and protectionism

Khrushchev: The Stalinist who denounced Stalin

Music industry: Do we only hear his master's voice?

Good Night and Good Luck

Get your May Day greeting into the socialist!

University staff vote to strike over pay


 

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