Press release: NOW will you listen? Junior doctors say no

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[5 July 2016]

Keep Our NHS Public is backing the junior doctors in their democratic decision to reject the pay offer which would usher in worsening pay and conditions for NHS staff, and put services for patients at risk to make privatising the NHS easier.

Professor Sue Richards is a member of Keep Our NHS’s Public’s Executive Committee:

‘This is a sign that junior doctors have no confidence in Jeremy Hunt, who has lied and tried to mislead the public.  Fortunately the public trust doctors more than politicians about what is good for patients: 7-day full working was always a mirage, cooked up as a clever ruse to put in the manifesto but without any resources attached to the idea other than spreading what was already there more thinly. And now the prime minister who proposed this is on the way out.

‘The NHS is heading for massive deficits, with plans to save money that cannot be delivered without real damage to patients.  It is likely that the economy will slide into recession, following the decision to leave the EU.  In those circumstances, keeping the current level of spending on the NHS in place will be near impossible, never mind providing the resources which would genuinely enable full 7-day working.

‘’This vote is strongly legitimate, with a sizeable turnout and a very clear majority for rejecting the deal. And 11% of doctors in the English NHS are EU citizens, most of them working in hospitals.  Many will feel unsettled by the recent referendum decision and it will be very difficult to replace them.  At a time like this, it is sheer folly to introduce changes to the contract which are opposed by the junior doctors.  Their good will be needed to get us through the looming staffing crisis and must not be squandered on a Conservative vanity project.

‘Undermining the terms and conditions of junior doctors and other staff is fundamental to fragmenting and privatising the NHS. Keep Our NHS Public opposes the marketisation and privatisation of the NHS. Therefore, we support the Junior Doctors.’

 

[Ends]

 

Editors’ Notes

Keep Our NHS Public was formed in 2005 and has a broad-based, public membership. There are 38 local groups, plus a national association. It has the explicit aim of countering marketisation [1,2] and privatisation of the NHS by campaigning for a publicly funded, publicly provided and publicly accountable NHS, available to all on the basis of clinical need. It is opposed to cuts in service which run counter to these principles. Further details: www.keepournhspublic.com

 

KONP’s Campaigns and Press Officer is Alan Taman:

07870 757 309

press@keepournhspublic.com

healthjournos@gmail.com

 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/keepnhspublic

Facebook: Keep-Our-NHS-Public

 

[1] Davis, J., Lister, J. and Wrigely, D. (2015) NHS For Sale. London: Merlin Press.

Leys, C. and Player, S. (2011) The Plot Against the NHS. Pontypool: Merlin

Lister, J. (2008) The NHS After 60: For Patients or Profits? London: Middlesex University Press

Owen, D. (2014) The Health of the Nation: The NHS in Peril. York: Methuen, Chapter 4.

Player, S. (2013) ‘Ready for market’. In NHS SOS ed by Davis, J. and Tallis, R. London: Oneworld, pp.38-61.

 

[2] The belief that ‘competition is always best’ does not work when applied to healthcare. A comprehensive and universal health service is best funded by public donation, which has been shown to be far more efficient overall than private-insurance healthcare models

[Davis, J., Lister, J. and Wrigley, D. (2015) NHS For Sale. London: Merlin Press. Chapters 2 and 8.

Lister, J. (2013) Health Policy Reform: global health versus private profit. Libri: Faringdon.

Pollock, A. and Price, D. (2013) In NHS SOS, ed by Davis, J. and Tallis, R. Oneworld: London, 174.]


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