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SAVE OUR NHS! - NHS Workshop - 10am, Saturday, 16th February

By socialista  |  Posted: February 08, 2013

Comments (3) SAVE OUR NHS! - NHS Workshop initiated by Gloucestershire 38 degrees group

To be held on Saturday 16 February, at 8 Milsom Street, Cheltenham, GL50 4BA

Everyone welcome for part or all of the programme!
  • Introduction starts 10 a.m.
  • Final session ends 3.00 p.m.
  • Showing of the film "Sicko" by Michael Moore 4.00 p.m.
There'll be a short introduction at the start, followed by workshops with brief contributions from speakers. So there's plenty of time for your questions, comments, experiences & ideas. At the end we will discuss how to build & coordinate a local campaign.

Introduction 10 a.m. – 10.30 am

Discussion groups 10.30 – 12.00
What is happening to the NHS
A guide to how the NHS is being destroyed
Information to lift the veil of secrecy
Parallel Discussion group 10.30 – 12.00
How can we stop attacks on NHS
What kind of campaign do we need?
Can we influence politicians .. can we fight in the courts..
What can we do locally?
Discussion group 12.30 – 2.00 pm
Privatisation – where is it happening
Who's behind it and how it's linked to cuts?

Parallel Discussion group 12.30 – 2.00 pm
How can trade unions and local campaigns work more effectively together?

What's happening in the NHS & why?
A&E closures ⿏ NHS budget cuts ⿏ Staff pay cuts and redundancies ⿏ GP out-of-hours services being put out to tender ⿏ Phasing-out of PCTs ⿏ Clinical Commissioning Groups ⿏ Outsourcing, cherry-picking by private service providers ⿏ The financial drain of PFI ⿏ Loss of control/accountability ⿏ Independent Treatment Centres ⿏ Ambulance services run by bus companies ⿏ Integration of social care & health ⿏ Personalised budgets ⿏ The Health and Social Care Act. There's so much happening – it's bewildering.

Most of these changes fly in the face of public opinion. Many policies are hidden behind political rhetoric designed to hide their real intent. A recent opinion-finding exercise in Gloucestershire showed 96% in favour of keeping community health services in the NHS. But it was a local campaign, led by Stroud Against the Cuts & supported by anti-cuts campaigners in Cheltenham, Gloucester & the Forest that forced NHS Gloucestershire to carry out this survey. The vast majority want a public NHS -why is it being privatised?

Health care is not about profit – we oppose privatisation
Due to public opposition, privatisation of the NHS is not being enacted in the same way as Thatcher privatised the railways or the energy sector. How is it being done, which companies & interests are involved, what impact will it have on care and staff wages and conditions? Is it a bad idea for charities to take over services? Why are PFI's still bleeding the NHS of resources? Many people don't even hear about these issues. We want to lift the veil of secrecy and develop a strategy that will help us reclaim the NHS.

What can we do? What kind of campaign is needed to stop this government from destroying the biggest and most important reform ever introduced by a British government?
What do NHS staff think? How can the trade unions work with local campaigns?

What are we going to do to SAVE THE NHS? The main aims of the workshop are to inform people about what is happening and why; decide what is important to us and which demands we want to campaign around and then to discuss how we can organise and campaign together – patients, staff, local people, community activists, NHS and health staff, professional bodies and trade unions .

Full programme details on workshops, speakers, etc, on request from e-mail: helpthenhs@hotmail.co.uk and relevant websites (see below).

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  • bonnie54  |  February 10 2013, 1:10PM

    I am a member of this group & we have done so much & I am proud to be part of it. I sincerely hope to get to this meeting. Anybody who cares what happens within the NHS should attend, as it affects all of us.

  • socialista  |  February 09 2013, 12:48AM

    The tax-dodging, arms-dealing, major Liberal Democrat donor who`s making money from our NHS: http://tinyurl.com/b9fwwsc Since 2004 donations totalling over £1million have been made to the Liberal Democrats by "non-dom" Indian arms dealer Sudhir Choudhrie and his family, both directly, and through businesses they control, including Alpha Healthcare, which stands to benefit from the break-up of the NHS. A September 2010 BBC Newsnight investigation into Choudhrie, one of the LibDem`s biggest donors, described him as: "widely reputed in India to be a major player in the defence industry" http://tinyurl.com/ahczuyj On 03/05/2005 Alpha Health made its second donation; this time the LibDems received £100,000. Less than 5 months later, Nick Clegg, then a leading candidate for party leader, made a remarkably bold statement in an interview he gave to the Independent, where he said: "One very, very important point – I think breaking up the NHS is exactly what you do need to do to make it a more responsive service." http://tinyurl.com/bk4jx6f On May 9, 2010, just 3 days after the General Election, The Mail on Sunday reported that parent company, C&C ALPHA Group, was preparing a stock market listing for its healthcare division (C&C Alpha Healthcare) for hundreds of millions of pounds. The Sunday Mirror reported on March 11, 2012 that Alpha Healthcare could "cash in" on the NHS reforms: "One proposal is to let GPs commission care, including mental health contracts. Alpha Hospitals works in partnership with the NHS to provide those services in three private hospitals in Manchester, Surrey and Yorkshire. It is looking to expand the number of hospitals where it could offer treatment." (Private Health Firm & £1m in gifts to Lib Dems – Company could gain from NHS reform, Sunday Mirror, March 11, 2012)http://tinyurl.com/ayfw4fu

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  • socialista  |  February 09 2013, 12:26AM

    Two Gloucestershire Tory MPs accepted donations from controversial super-rich private health investor: Political donations totalling £8000 were made by controversial hedge fund manager Crispin Odey to two Gloucestershire Conservative constituency parties. The Electoral Commission`s website reveals that Forest of Dean MP Mark Harper received £5,000 on 09/02/2010 – just 3 months before the general election, while Gloucester Conservative constituency party received £3,000 on 03/12/2007. Richard Graham was elected MP for Gloucester at the last general election and like Odey has previously worked for Barings bank, which went bust in 1995. In total Odey has donated £222,000 to the Conservative party. Crispin Odey is one of the main investors in Circle Healthcare, which was the first private organisation to take over the running of an NHS hospital when it assumed control of Hinchingbrooke hospital in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire in February 2012. http://tinyurl.com/c5ycx5w

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