Press Release: Shame of Red Cross emergency

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[Saturday 7 January]

Keep Our NHS Public is calling on the government to heed the red-flag warning about the NHS from the British Red Cross and stop starving the NHS of the funds it now desperately needs before even more lives are lost.

This follows in the wake of the British Red Cross saying that the NHS was suffering its own ‘humanitarian crisis’, in a week when patients were reported as dying on trolleys while waiting in A&E and the Red Cross was increasingly called in the assist trusts nearing breaking point.

Dr David Wrigley (Deputy BMA Chair*, Lancashire GP and member of Keep Our NHS Public) , said:

‘It is a damning indictment on Theresa May, Philip Hammond and Jeremy Hunt that an independent charity – the British Red Cross – has said that the NHS was suffering a ‘humanitarian crisis’. We thank them for the work they are doing but it should never have come to this.

‘For years doctors and campaigners have been saying the NHS is grossly underfunded and wasting millions on privatising parts of the NHS. Staff are on their knees due to lack of beds and resources and cannot provide the care that patients deserve.

‘We call on the government to seek an urgent solution by increasing funding to the NHS back to the EU average and once more we ask that the privatisation of services is reversed.’

*The opinion expressed here does not necessarily reflect that of the BMA.



Editors’ Notes

Keep Our NHS Public was formed in 2005 and has a broad-based, public membership. There are over 35 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:

KONP’s Campaigns and Press Officer is Alan Taman:

07870 757 309

[email protected]


Facebook: Keep-Our-NHS-Public


[1] Davis, J., Lister, J. and Wrigley, 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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