NHS and health

Editorials - March 1995

Editorial comments on the ongoing influence of Stalinism in the British labour movement, the need for a campaign to defend the welfare state, and calling for justice for Mumia Abu-Jamal.

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Marxist Theory and History: 

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Industrial news in brief

Author: 

Ollie Moore, Janine Booth, Peggy Carter and Gemma Short

National Union of Teachers (NUT) members at Forest Hill School in Lewisham will strike again on 20, 25 and 26 April in their campaign against vicious cuts being imposed by management to fulfil conditions of repayment of loan to Lewisham council. There is a demonstration on Saturday 22 April.

The proposed restructure at the school is in response to a £1.3m deficit. Lewisham council has given the school a “loan” however they are demanding that the school cuts £800,000 from their wage bill.

Forest Hill strikes again; reinstate Lee Cornell!; Night Tube win; RCN to ballot nurses over pay; RMT holds first disabled members conference; train strikes disrupt Grand National; six cinemas on strike; cleaners’ wild-cat strike.

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Young people and mental health – a political issue

Author: 

Joe Booth

Statistics show that help for young people with mental health issues is dramatically decreasing. A 2016 investigation by the Guardian and 38 Degrees showed that trusts around England were “drawing up plans for hospital closures and cutbacks” in an attempt to avoid a £20 billion shortfall by 2020. This means that young people aren’t getting the help they need or deserve.

More than 850,000 children and young people in the UK have been diagnosed with a mental health condition.

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Stop giving money to private health providers

Author: 

Charlotte Zalens

The crisis in the NHS cannot be solved by increasing funding alone. Some funding needs to be reallocated. According to research by the Health Foundation, half of last year’s nearly £2 billion government cash injection for the NHS was given to private providers. That practice has to end!

£1 out of every £8 of the budgets allocated by local health commissioners in England is now spent on care provided by private providers.

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Real soldiers do feel sad

Author: 

Carrie Evans

Last week saw the drop of Stormzy’s debut album Gang Signs and Prayer . Whilst the whole album is beautiful, brave and ambitious, it’s a bit of a grower and maybe not what most grime fans were expecting. It deals with themes of black identity, love and spirituality in a way mostly unheard in grime before.

Stormzy’s debut album Gang Signs and Prayer is beautiful, brave and ambitious, although maybe not what most grime fans were expecting.

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Culture and Reviews: 

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The NHS is at breaking point

Author: 

Claudia Raven

The NHS is at breaking point. The planned destruction of the service, through cuts, closures, privatisation and poor treatment of staff is coming to a head.

The NHS and social care should be publicly provided, publicly and properly funded, publicly accountable and well-staffed. Staff should be well paid and work under good terms and conditions — unpaid breaks and travel time must end, proper rest facilities must be provided and so on if we are to have safe, decent care. PFI, a never-ending debt owed largely to tax-payer owned banks, should be abolished.

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NHS crisis is being used to boost private healthcare

Author: 

Claudia Raven

Most days there is a new NHS horror story in the news. The BBC documentary Hospital showed the difficulty many hospitals are facing every day to find beds. In some hospitals even emergency surgery — the so called CEPOD lists — have been cancelled. The Mirror’s front page picture of a child being treated on plastic chairs due to a lack of beds was picked up by Corbyn at Prime Minister’s Questions.

The Tories want to popularise the idea that the NHS is unsustainable and poor quality.

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The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

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Emergency cash for the NHS!

Author: 

Editorial

For many healthworkers, the NHS is facing its worst crisis in memory. Small wonder the British Red Cross, called in to provide support with discharging patients from hospitals safely, describes the situation as a humanitarian crisis. Yet Jeremy Hunt and Teresa May deny there is a problem.

Emergency cash is needed now for the NHS.

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Around the world: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Pfizer drug scam

Author: 

Gerry Bates

Pharmaceutical company Pfizer has been fined a record £84.2 million for overcharging the NHS for drugs. Pfizer had increased the price it charged the NHS for an anti-epilepsy drug by 2,600%! Though shocking, this is likely to be the tip of the iceberg.

Even without irregular price hikes and “unfair prices″ pharmaceutical companies regularly make many millions of pounds by patenting their drugs so cheaper versions cannot be made in competition.

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Cutting the NHS to the bone

Author: 

Gemma Short, Charlie Bell and Romesh Amaradeva

The NHS Bill 16/17 (formerly the NHS reinstatement bill) was due to have its second reading in Parliament on Friday 4 November.

NHS campaigners gathered outside Parliament to support the bill. The bill did not get discussed on that date and the second reading has now been rescheduled to 24 February 2017. The bill was presented to Parliament on 13 July by Labour MPs Rachel Maskell and Margaret Greenwood. The bill would restore the NHS as an accountable public service by reversing 25 years of privatisation and marketisation.

NHS bosses across the country are quietly drawing up plans for hospital closures, cutbacks and radical reorganisations to cope with a projected £20bn shortfall by 2020.

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