The NHS is faced with a crisis; a man who has been tasked with privatising healthcare (evidence) has been given free reign by a supportive mainstream media and a sleeping public.
The NHS has undergone drastic top down reforms under Jeremy Hunt’s rule including the Health and Social Care act of 2012, which has fragmented the NHS creating an unworkable level of bureaucracy in the system (King’s Fund). Under the guise of providing more choice to local services, Jeremy Hunt opened up the NHS to direct market competition. Now the NHS has take part in a vicious internal bidding market to provide it’s own services, allowing companies such as Circle, Virgin Health and many more to out bid the NHS on services they deem low hanging, non-urgent, & profitable. Each year the cost of the internal market costs the tax payer over £10 BILLION a year, 8.5% of the NHS’ budget that should be spent on patients.
The internal market introduced into the NHS by this and the last government has not only cost tax payers up to £40 billion in legal fees since it’s inception, it’s also seen private companies scoop up a large number of healthcare contracts. The NHS maintains a critical mass of purchasing power which allows it to provide services both effectively and cheaply, when compared to health services around the world. In fact the NHS has been ranked the World’s top health service in international rankings more than once and doesn’t need privatisation to provide a world-class service.
So when private companies such as Virgin Health write up contract proposals to offer the same services for a lesser cost to the public, but yet still milk significant profits from the sick and vulnerable – one has to ask, how do they do it?
The answer: they cut corners. The privatisation of Hinchingbrooke hospital and it’s absolute failure to provide for patients exemplify what happens when private companies are introduced to put profit before patients. Read more here.
Why are the Doctors striking?
Fast-forward to today, a mere 4 years after the introduction of Jeremy Hunt’s NHS reform; NHS hospitals have been plunged into billions of debt across the country, and for the first time in 40 years Doctors are on strike.
The mainstream media are consistent in telling you that Doctors are striking for greater pay, more comfortable working hours. The newest tactic employed by the MSM is to confuse the public by claiming not even the majority of Doctors nor the BMA even support the strikes anymore.
What this really comes down to is:
1.) Sure, Doctors are not willing to accept a large reduction in pay. Who would?
2.) In our current ‘5-day’ NHS staff rotas are filled with holes putting patients at risk. There’s simply not the funding or the staff to maintain a full NHS service in our current system. A&E and departments around the country face closure due to piling up debts and a lack of Junior Doctors to fill the positions.
3.) The extended ‘7-day’ NHS proposed by Jeremy Hunt was proposed on a cost-neutral basis to provide non-emergency care every day of the week. However we see again, there’s no extra funding being provided for this plan. An already stretched staff, at breaking point, are to be stretched more thinly to provide the service. No extra staff are required, if Jeremy Hunt’s plans are to be believed.
4.) The rationale behind the ‘7-day’ NHS was initially linked to an increase in weekend associated death rates supposedly shown in a study commissioned by Mr Hunt himself. The authors of the initial study explicitly stated their evidence doesn’t link any weekend effect to Junior Doctors, and future follow-up studies were forced to redefine weekends to Friday-Saturday-Sunday-Monday to make the trends fit. We’re all aware as working people, that Friday and Monday are NOT weekends.
So when you hear about those greedy Doctors striking at your expense just remember that Doctors around the country are some of the most intelligent, dedicated and caring individuals. They enter their career eyes open to the commitment and sacrifice their job entails. These people could’ve been living much easier lives as big city financiers, business consultants and the like, but they chose the difficult path. They know these strikes will push back operation dates, they know these strikes will cause cancellations. That’s the short term view Jeremy Hunt wants people to consider and become angry about. Doctors see the longer term effects of the changes being pushed through, they see the unfilled rotas, they see the lack of resources they have to do their jobs properly, and the unsafe working hours they’re being forced into. Trust that when the Doctors strike, they’re doing it for you. When you hear the MSM demonising the Doctors, take your time to seek out the voices of real Doctors on the front lines and LISTEN to their reasoning. A fantastically clam, collected and measured interview of Dr Lauren Gavaghan is below, I urge you to start there and share widely.