A victory, but the fight to defend the NHS is hotting up…
Our victory in 2013-2014 against the threat of ward closures and job cuts showed what could be achieved when local people – residents, patients, hospital staff, trade unions, politicians and a number of concerned local celebs – came out to defend our hospital.
We were told that plans for huge cutbacks in services would be scrapped and a new strategy put in place to guarantee our hospital’s future.
But Steve Hitchins, head of the management board, has announced an urgent need for savings after the government imposed drastic cuts.
Let us not forget that the government – despite what it says about protecting health service funding – is actually forcing austerity on our hospitals and increasing privatisation, packaging up large parts of the NHS, including hospital and community services such as district nursing and mental health, and selling them off to private companies who will cut care provision and jobs in a bid to boost profits.
Join our campaign to keep our local hospital and oppose these threats before it is too late.
For more details about the progress of the campaign, and a list of future actions, visit the “Meetings and events” section of the website.
Full media coverage here
Vote for politicians who vow to save the NHS
In the run-up to the May general election, we will be holding hustings for local candidates to come along and tell us what policies they support and how they will go about reversing the government attacks on our NHS.
We will be asking a representative from each of the main political parties to respond to our Manifesto for Health. So come along and quizz the people standing for parliament on your behalf and find out if they are pledged to making a difference.
From 7.15pm on Monday 23 March at Islington town hall, Upper Street, N1 2UD.
No to privatisation of out of hours service
The procurement of a new £50 million out of hours contract covering all five North Central London clinical commissioning groups – Camden, Islington, Haringey, Barnet and Enfield – has been put on hold until April while the CCGs hold “public engagement” meetings to try to win over opposition.
How well the OOH service is run – if it is also combined with the 111 emergency phoneline, which is another part of the plan – will have a big impact on the number of people turning up at A&E. We want the service to be run by local doctors, not by a big private medical company. That’s why we are saying the “public engagement” exercise is not enough and why we are calling for proper public consultation so that the view of most people that the new service should not be privatised is taken into account.
People’s Inquiry warns of danger to London hospitals
The People’s Inquiry into London’s NHS completed its information-gathering stage at Lewisham Hospital, having held seven public hearings in different parts of London, and received evidence from around 100 people, including DWHC.
The six-person panel, which included Roy Lilley and the Guardian’s Polly Toynbee, has now published its report, which makes grim reading for defenders of London hospitals under threat of closures.
But the authors of the report say there are ways out of this mess. Their aim in highlighting the current crisis is to open up debate and discussion on NHS policy in the run-up to the next general election, and pin the blame firmly on the government.
The outcome of that election could decide whether our health service survives. London NHS services ‘unravelling’ - BBC News
Read the panel’s recommendations here