Southend Labour Support Echo Blood Test Campaign
December 20, 2012 1 Comment
Southend Labour councillors have leant their support to the Southend Echo’s campaign for blood testing services to remain local and warned that more local health services could be lost because of the coalition governments reorganisation of the NHS.
Julian Ware-Lane, Labour Councillor for Milton Ward, said, “I think the Echo’s campaign for blood testing to remain in Southend is important and will be supported by the majority of people in the area. Moving this service out of the area adds to the time it takes for people to get their results and will out their health at risk.
“Sadly, the blood tests are just part of a much bigger problem caused by the coalition’s reforms. Despite not being mentioned in manifestoes or the coalition agreement, the Tory-Lib Dem coalition introduced radical changes to the NHS. At the time we said that they would be putting put people’s lives and well-being at risk, sadly we are now seeing this happen. The focus of the NHS should be on providing the best healthcare free to everyone whenever and wherever they need it.“
“Even the multi-millionaires in the Cabinet rely on the amazing service the NHS provides, yet they’ve taken a wrecking ball to a vital pillar of our society. What we’re seeing here is the start of a very scary period for healthcare in our area.“
1) Despite David Cameron promising “no major top down reorganisation of the NHS”, the Health and Social Care Act 2012 introduced the most extensive restructuring in the NHS’s 64 year history. The British Medial Journal said that there is “evidence that privatisation is an inevitable consequence of many of the policies” contained in the Act. Richard Horton, the editor of The Lancet has said that “people will die” and predicted “unprecedented chaos” because of the reforms.
The Act changes fundamental principles of the National Health Service, including changing the original guarantee that the NHS would provide needed health services to allow “any willing provider” to supply services instead. This allows provate sector operations and pricing to enter the NHS, potentially bankrupting local NHS operations that cannot compete and therefore removing those services if they are not profitable.
2) Private providers of NHS services have already been accused of providing unsafe and insufficient healthcare. Harmoni, who provide out of hours care in London and parts of the south east, are bidding for contracts offered under the 2012 Act despite accusations that cost-saving measures have lead to under-staffing of their existing services, putting lives at risk.