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The future of the NHS (if any)

...on serious topics that don't fit anywhere else at present.
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Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1741 Postby Alan H » September 27th, 2017, 6:31 pm

Latest post of the previous page:

What we talk about when we talk about privatisation
That privatisation is occurring in the NHS, as in education, council services, and a host of other areas, is indisputable. Privatisation involves the transfer of public assets into private hands or the transfer of public functions to the private sector. There is no shortage of examples. Patients are transported in ambulances with a G4S logo. Laboratory and pharmacy services are outsourced, as well as administrative functions, cleaning, and catering, to companies like Serco and Capita. Private companies like Virgin Healthcare are winning contracts to run healthcare and sue the NHS when they are not awarded them. The Private Finance Initiative is itself a form of privatisation, where Government abdicates its role to raise cheap finance publically, instead outsourcing this to private arrangements at higher interest rates. A recent report from The Centre for Health and the Public Interest found that between 2010 and 2016£831 million haemorrhaged from the NHS as PFI company profits.

In this context there remains a curious strain of privatisation denial, some coming from sensible, serious sources. So what does it mean to respond to the question “Is the NHS being privatised?” with the answer “no”?

1) Use of an incomplete definition of privatisation: “If you see Sid, tell him” ran the slogan from the 1980s campaign to promote British Gas shares when it was privatised. Since there has not so far been and is unlikely ever to be an NHS share issue, by this limited definition, privatisation isn’t happening. This example from asenior commentator at the HSJ, describing talk of NHS privatisation as “silly”—“Hate to have to say it yet again, but the NHS is being underfunded, denationalised, and outsourced. It is not being privatised.” The problem of course is precisely that denationalisation and outsourcing are aspects of privatisation. Railway privatisation, which no one would dispute happened, did not involve a share issue either. Defunding a service so it is failing and patients need to seek support elsewhere is also de facto privatisation.

2) Taking a narrow focus on healthcare provision: A recent King’s Fund report “Is the NHS being privatised?” concludes that there is only modest change, “from 7.3% in 2014/15 to 7.7% of the budget in 2016/17”. However it may not be immediately clear that this refers topurchase of healthcare from non-NHS providers, rather than the more extensive spend by the NHS in the private sector on things it would previously have done in house. The use of private healthcare providers is an entirely legitimate area of interest, but it is important not to confuse a part for the whole.

3) Conflating privatisation with “free at the point of use”: Many people protesting the rise in private sector involvement in the NHS do also fear the coming of an increasingly rationed NHS, with charges for additional care. As the King’s Fundreports: “the NHS can no longer maintain quality of care and meet performance standards within its current budget.” However this is bait and switch in discussions about privatisation. Before the railways were privatised you still had to buy a ticket. An outsourced health service doesn’t necessarily need to charge users upfront.

4) Declining to believe in the direction of travel: This relies on the semantic argument that the NHS is not beingprivatised because there is no intent to completely privatise it or because privatisation so far has been limited. The 2012 Health and Social Care Act was intended to increase marketization in the NHS. Although there have been attempts to dismiss it as a “mistake” it formed a continuation of neoliberal policies and ideology stretching back to the 1980’s. Even theIMF now acknowledge the hazards of neoliberalism, not least worsening inequality. The recent decision to abandon the privatisation of NHS Professionals is welcome but is likely to be a question of timing and political tactics rather than a change of heart on the government’s part.

5) No, it’s already been privatised: Since the 1980s, as outlined in the introduction, many aspects of the NHS have been transferred to the private sector and many people in supporting roles who would have been employed by the NHS are now employed by outsourcing companies. For example, a recent study showing that outsourcing cleaning services was associated withincreased MRSA incidence, found that in 126 acute trusts 51 outsourced cleaning and 75 retained it in-house.

People objecting to privatisation have specific concerns about how this will function in the NHS. How will relationships of professionalism and discretionary effort be preserved in a system where activities are increasingly monetised? What is the opportunity cost offunding competitive tendering and other aspects of market infrastructure? Onora O’Neillhas highlighted the dangers when there is a change from a system of trust to a system of regulation and performance indicators.They also have general concerns about the diminishing role of the public sector—loss of accountability, reversal of gains in conditions of employment and other rights, reduction in equitable access and a reduced multiplier as money is siphoned offshore rather than recycled through the tax system.

Sensible consideration of these issues requires a holistic view and transparent definitions, so it is clear what is actually being discussed.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1742 Postby Alan H » November 4th, 2017, 6:48 pm

Jeremy Hunt faces legal action over attempts to 'Americanise' the NHS
Legal action is being taken against Jeremy Hunt and the Department of Health over their proposals to restructure the NHS, The Independent can reveal.

Plans have been tabled to convert the NHS into a public/private enterprise, which critics say is based upon the US private health insurance-based system.

Senior health professionals and campaigners have now come together to take legal action and demand a judicial review, to ensure full parliamentary scrutiny of the proposals.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1743 Postby Alan H » November 5th, 2017, 12:04 am

This Brexit thingy is all going tickety-boo, isn't it? 'No more Brexit soap opera': 60% of UK firms are ready to trigger contingency Brexit plans and move staff within months
60% of firms will trigger contingency Brexit plans if the government fails to secure a transition deal by March 2018, according to a new survey

That could involve moving staff or slowing recruitment.

"Currently, we see one major challenge – not Brexit itself ... But the approach to Brexit," CBI president Paul Drechsler will warn on Monday.
Why the fuck are we doing this again?
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1744 Postby Alan H » November 14th, 2017, 12:15 pm

Lying liar, pants on fire, liar Jeremy 'liar' Hunt is at his lying again: JEREMY HUNT HUMILIATED BY TV STAR WHO PROVED HIS BOASTS ABOUT NHS IMPROVEMENT ARE “TOTAL BULLSHIT”
Jeremy Hunt has been diagnosed with a case of severe “bullshit” after his claims about NHS improvement under the Tories were given a second opinion by an unlikely source – Dr Who star Ralf Little.

The actor took it upon himself to disprove Hunt in a truly epic Twitter thread and has also challenged the Health Secretary to a TV debate over the future of the NHS.

It comes after the pair clashed over the Tory MP’s claim on the Andrew Marr show last month that he is leading the “biggest expansion of mental health provision in Europe”.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1745 Postby Alan H » December 29th, 2017, 7:33 pm

Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1746 Postby Alan H » January 2nd, 2018, 4:40 pm

Our benefits system has become a racket for cheating poor people
That our benefits system is broken is no longer up for debate. Ministers are told universal credit is a fiasco and MPs weep over starving families in one of the richest societies in human history. Even rightwing tabloids run grim updates on how men with terminal cancer are declared fit to work just weeks before they die.

Such cases are described as shameful. As failures. They are lined up like so many one-offs – not representative of fair-play Britain. But Pike and her colleagues know different. They see a system that routinely snatches money out of the hands of people who need and are entitled to it and bullies claimants with contempt.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

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Nick
Posts: 11027
Joined: July 4th, 2007, 10:10 am

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1747 Postby Nick » January 3rd, 2018, 1:30 am



Or, to put it another way, Virgin Group provides 1 billion pounds worth of medical benefits for the British public.

TH seems to have descended into a lefty cut-and-paste site, not a discussion forum. Very sad.

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Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1748 Postby Alan H » January 3rd, 2018, 1:40 am

Nick wrote:


Or, to put it another way, Virgin Group provides 1 billion pounds worth of medical benefits for the British public.
So not even a penny profit for Mr Branson? How will he ever rebuild his private island?

TH seems to have descended into a lefty cut-and-paste site, not a discussion forum. Very sad.
:laughter:
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1749 Postby Alan H » January 16th, 2018, 12:23 am

Hunt's secret NHS plan opens the door to further privatisation
Brexit's dominance of media coverage and parliamentary time is providing the perfect cover for controversial reform of the NHS by stealth.

Jeremy Hunt and NHS England's latest big idea is Accountable Care Organisations (ACOs). These bodies would be allowed to make most decisions about how to allocate resources and design care for people in certain areas.

At the moment, that's done by public bodies whose governance is regulated by statute, set up by parliament after wide consultation and sometimes fierce debate. ACOs, by contrast, can be private and for-profit bodies. They are not mentioned in any current legislation and would have no statutory functions. They are not subject to the statutory duties imposed on other parts of the NHS.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?

User avatar
Alan H
Posts: 23999
Joined: July 3rd, 2007, 10:26 pm

Re: The future of the NHS (if any)

#1750 Postby Alan H » July 14th, 2018, 2:56 pm

Anti-NHS think-tank with links to new health secretary Matt Hancock under investigation by charity commission
An anti-NHS think tank whose chair has donated thousands of pounds to the new health secretary is being investigated on whether it breached rules on political independence by the Charity Commission.

Concerns were brought to the watchdog about the Institute of Economic Affairs which is registered as an educational charity but has ties to the Conservative Party and the Brexit movement.

Matt Hancock, who replaced Jeremy Hunt this week, has received £32,000 since 2010 from the chair of the IEA’s board, Neil Record who has also donated to the government.
Alan Henness

There are three fundamental questions for anyone advocating Brexit:

1. What, precisely, are the significant and tangible benefits of leaving the EU?
2. What damage to the UK and its citizens is an acceptable price to pay for those benefits?
3. Which ruling of the ECJ is most persuasive of the need to leave its jurisdiction?


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