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jeremy corbyn over NHS

Corbyn Declares War against May over NHS

by George Christoforou

jeremy corbyn over NHS

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn makes a speech

What would drive a quarter of a million people onto the streets of London in a protest to save the NHS? As the Tories promised in 2010 and 2015 that the NHS is safe in their hands, why are so many people frightened for the NHS.

With real wages in the NHS falling 14% we have seen health workers leaving the NHS and new recruits avoiding NHS employment. This has resulted in 25,000 nursing vacancies and 3,500 midwife vacancies. In 2011 71% of junior doctors went to work as senior doctors after their 2 years training that figure has fallen to 50% in 2016. The main reason these junior doctors gave was the Jeremy Hunt contract imposed on them.

An NHS that has a smaller wage bill would be more profitable if privatised. All austerity measures within the NHS such as those included in STP plans look like ways to reduce costs.

STPs have been created to cut £22bn over five years (a 20% cut in real terms). The UK now has only 2.8 doctors per 1,000 people. GP services have been cut 20% in the last five years. The UK also has 2.76 beds per 1,000 people, compared with Japan’s 13.2, Germany’s 8.2 and Greece’s 4.8. One can only conclude that Hunt’s cuts to staff and resources to support the beds is deliberate policy to run down the NHS ready for privatisation.

The winter crisis in A&E with over 40 hospitals declaring “black alert” which put people’s lives at risk resulting in several unnecessary deaths was caused not by the lack of beds. The extra patients caused by cuts in social care just happened to expose this fact.

The media, including the BBC, again and again are downplaying the significant danger to the NHS and the Conservative’s role in running down the NHS. The BBC has quoted the figure attending the march in the 10s of thousands rather than over 200,000. Again the allegation of fake news is being laid at the door of the BBC.

Jeremy Corbyn’s passionate attendance at the March and his call that enough is enough signifies a toughening up in his stance and fight against austerity cuts and privatisation in the NHS. The message about saving the NHS is not going to be won in the mainstream media. It has to be won on the streets. The march for the NHS on March 4th rivaled and may have topped even the poll tax protest that brought down Margaret Thatcher. 
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