Oxford march for the NHS
Venue: Manzil Way, East Oxford
End the staffing crisis - extend London weighting to Oxfordshire - bring back bursaries
No to longer waiting times
Stop cuts and privatisation - put patients before profits
1st June - Assemble 11 AM, Manzil Way, East Oxford
End the staffing crisis - Oxford weighting now!
Oxfordshire’s NHS has one of the worst staffing crisis in the country due to the difficulties recruiting and retaining staff due to the very high cost of living in the area. There are over one thousand vacancies in the Oxford University Hospitals Trust alone. The lack of staff is undermining services and patient care, causing bed closures, damaging continuity of care, and increasing stress. Staff are working their days off and holidays to plug the gaps in services and make ends meet.
Oxfordshire’s NHS Trusts are spending tens of millions on agency staff to cover vacancies. Overworked and over-stretched staff are more likely to make mistakes.
All of Oxfordshire’s MP’s and NHS employers agree that staff need to be paid a cost of living payment to keep local services running. Thames Valley Police get up to £3000 a year to help meet the high housing costs. NHS staff in London paying the same housing costs as Oxford get an additional 15% in their wages to help them to afford to live there. Extending London weighting to Oxfordshire would help recruit and retain the staff needed to keep the NHS services running safely.
NHS privatisation continues apace. Privatisation is about placing profit at the heart of the NHS, not patient care.
In Oxfordshire privatisation threatens to undermine cancer care as essential PET-CT scan services are forced into “partnership” with private company ‘In Health’. It appears that In Health will substantially benefit, since it will receive any profits from scans of private patients and from funded clinical trials. Those involved in the service have estimated that, on the basis of previous years' trials and private activity, this could amount to a transfer out of the local NHS of one million pounds a year. This might be good for greedy fat cats, but bad for NHS patients. Some patients will be forced into mobile clinics though NHS advice is for scans at fixed sites.
Determined to ram through this privatisation NHS England has threatened legal action against clinicians raising concerns over the safety of the plans.
Some 21 contracts in NHS England worth £127 million are currently out to tender. One of the biggest contracts up for grabs is worth £91 million— is to run the NHS 111/Clinical Assessment Service in the south east of England. The government passed a law that says private companies have to be allowed to bid for services worth more than £650,000.
End cuts and underfunding
Over a decade of austerity, underfunding and top down reforms have stretched our health service to breaking point. The Oxford University Hospitals is so short of cash it is has yet to put a plan in place to replace cladding first identified as a fire risk in the wake of Grenfell. Yet more cuts are on the way as the government refuses to fund the NHS to the level needed to meet the increasing demand of an aging population. Yet it gives more tax breaks to the rich.
Come out to defend the NHS on June 1st. Bring your family, your friends, your work mates and anyone who cares about the future of our NHS.
Supported by Oxfordshire UNISON Health Branch; Oxford UNITE Health; Oxon Keep Our NHS Public; Oxon Socialist Health Association
- 01 Jun 2019 11:00