West Mids job cuts more evidence of Tory undermining of our NHS
450 NHS jobs are to be axed, in just one of our NHS Trusts!
Sandwell and West Birmingham hospitals NHS Trust –which runs the Sandwell and the City hospitals – announced the jobs axe that will affect not only the staff involved, but also over half a million people the hospitals serve.
Is it because we don’t need these NHS staff anymore? No, demand for services and the population of the area is growing.
The cuts are because the hospitals are ‘in debt’ according to the market-ised NHS invented by Tony Blair’s New Labour and enthusiastically pursued by this Tory government. The truth is our NHS is being underfunded – ie given too few funds and then it is claimed it is in debt.
Another financial pressure on the NHS Trust is the PFI (Private Finance Initiative, better known as ‘Profits From Illness’) scheme to build a new Birmingham Met hospital to replace substantial parts of 2 local hospitals. The price of this private scheme has soared from £353million to £588 million recently.
It is a disgrace that the trust is making staff cuts, making workers lose their jobs, in order to satisfy private firms shareholders.
Staff cuts are dangerous
The chief executive of one of England’s biggest trusts, speaking anonymously, said the drive to reduce staff numbers was reckless and counterproductive. “What they don’t seem to appreciate is that it’s a hands-on business and you need the hands on. The reality is that there isn’t enough money going into the NHS for it to do its job properly.”
The Francis report into the Mid Staffs hospital scandal revealed that staffing levels must be increased. Even hospital bosses- worry that reducing staff will hit quality of care and patient safety while increasing waiting times
The government claim they have increased NHS funding, but the truth is they are forcing £22 million of ‘efficiency’ savings ie cuts. Hospitals are being told to shed nurses and other frontline medical staff to rescue the NHS from an acute funding crisis created by the government itself.
This helps those who oppose the NHS, but dare not openly attack it because it is popular amongst working people. It allows them to suggest that the NHS is failing and to then propose their beloved privatisation ie making profits from illness for the companies many of them represent.
A West Midlands midwife says:
“The NHS is purposefully being mismanaged into the ground, so that the Tories can claim the only way to fix it is to privatise it. Do not allow your health, or your sickness, to become a profitable commodity. Stand with the Socialist Party and fight for your NHS – it is the last tenable link we have to a state that values well-being over profit.”
Resist the job cuts – SAVE OUR NHS