Monday, 24 April 2017

Join us in Oxford on May 13th to demand a halt to the destruction of our NHS.

Assemble 1 pm Saturday May 13th, Manzil Way green, East Oxford, OX4 1YH
Called by Unison Oxfordshire Health branch and supported by Oxford KONP.
Printed leafelts and posters available on request (please see attached sample)

*Stop the STP cuts to local general, community and mental health services
*Stop handing NHS services over to fat cats to be run for profit at the expense of patients
*Stop driving essential staff out of the NHS with attacks on pay and conditions
*Defend free healthcare for all

Ever since 1948 the National Health Service has been the envy of the world. It is the greatest contribution towards social and health equality. The NHS is an example of how a caring society can create good and safe care based on social solidarity. The NHS is the best way to ensure fair access to treatment for the acute or long-term sick, and those with complex or costly health needs, irrespective of their ability to pay. Yet the UK's greatest achievement is being destroyed before our eyes by people who believe health should be a commodity available to only those who can afford it.

The sustained cuts and privatisation of the NHS is fundamentally undermining healthcare for the majority in the UK. The latest attack is being carried out under the misnamed “Sustainability and Transformation Plans” - but in fact mask £22 billion cuts in the next 3 years.

Last winter saw the worst NHS crisis ever, yet the government's STP cuts mean a third of Trusts are planning to close A&E departments, making future winters far worse.
Waiting times are on the increase across the board. These included ambulance call out times being below target, no rise in A&E attendance but increased waiting times, and a rise in operations cancelled for non-clinical reasons. Sick people are waiting weeks to get an appointment to see their GP, yet surgeries are being earmarked for closure.

STP cuts mean half of NHS Trusts plan to reduce community hospitals, and almost half plan to slash hospital beds. Instead of standing up to the government for the people of Oxfordshire county NHS bosses are planning county wide cuts that will effect us all.

Essential NHS staff have been under sustained attack with wage cuts for almost a decade while workloads have increased. Staffing is critical to safe and effective services but the government has created a staffing crisis with 20,000 too few nurses. A&E departments alone need an extra 3,000 doctors. The latest 1% offer to NHS staff is an insult the hard work and dedication and will do nothing to remedy the staffing crisis.

The government's refusal to grant rights to EU migrants working in the NHS has caused a collapse in recruitment from the EU, and the removal of the bursary has caused a collapse in applications to start the nursing degree.

Cuts and privatisation are being touted as the only way to save the NHS – yet these are the cause of the problems. We are being told that NHS funds have to be cut to save the economy – but the wealthiest people are being given tax breaks – money that could be spent on looking after our sick.

It is possible to stop the destruction of the NHS. 250,000 people marched for the NHS in March 2017 and tens of thousands have protested across the country in campaigns to defend local hospitals and services. We need to build the pressure to halt the attacks.

Join us in Oxford on May 13th to demand a halt to the destruction of our NHS.

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