Tuesday, 20 November 2012

10 ways the Tories destroyed our NHS in 2012.

Closures: 10% of A & E Wards are shutting. Dozens of District General Hospitals are facing downgrade or closure. Half of England's Ambulance Stations are being shut down and sold off. In total, 591 hectares of NHS land is up for sale.

Staff Cuts: 85,000 less people are employed by the state in Health & Social Care. 42,000 less are employed in the actual NHS. 7,000+ Nurses have lost their job. 9,000 more jobs are to be lost before Christmas. 

Bankruptcies: 7 NHS Foundation Trusts have 'hit squads' in examining their books. 2 Trusts have been placed in administration with one judged 'bankrupt'. 3 further stares are facing administration this Christmas. A second NHS Hospital is now being privatised.

Care standards:  Of the top 10 private health companies in the UK, there have been 100+ Care Quality Commission Inspections on their premises this year that have reported shortcomings. Broken equipment, poor staffing and failure to ensure patient dignity have all been identified.

Postcode Lottery: No 2 local areas in 2012 offer the same health entitlement. North Yorkshire patients, for example, are losing their right to follow up appointments and health visitors as £10m of cuts are being made to local services. Children's rights to expensive cancer drugs vary from trust to trust. 

Patient Satisfaction: When Labour left office NHS Patient Satisfaction was the highest it had ever been (73%). It has since taken a record slump to (58%). Just over half of people are now happy with what the NHS has to offer. 

Privatisation: £7bn worth of the NHS has been privatised and 90% of it has been handed to a tiny number of companies. Jeremy Hunt has ordered every Primary Care Trust in England to put 3 chunks of its NHS out to tender. This follows on from the 456 forced tenders this year. In total, 912 pieces of our NHS are being flogged. 

Free at the Point of Use: In Sheffield elderly patients are having to pay £5-17 for foot treatment. For a time Sheffield was also charging patients £25 for whiplash tests. In the East of England major health providers are limiting courses of physiotherapy treatment. 70% of GPs say that there has been a reduced entitlement on the NHS this year.

Costs: The NHS is wasting more money than ever before. Agency Spend among Foundation Trusts has climbed 50%. We are now paying private consultancies hundreds of millions to assist the new CCGs, to audit accounts and to report on future viability of NHS Trusts. 

Transparency: The Tories defied the courts in refusing to publish the NHS Risk Register. The Tories have increasingly refused Freedom of Information Requests. A judge in Devon reported failings in the way parts of the NHS were handed over to private companies. David Cameron has now abolished Equality Impact Assessments. This is a new idea where democracy and accountability has been replaced by dishonesty, bullying and a disregard for the law.

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