York Green Party

9 April 2013

Green Party supporters joined over 500 concerned residents from all over Yorkshire in a lively and colourful protest in York on 6th April against the Lib Dem-Tory Coalition's attack on the National Health Service.

The new Health & Social Care Act has opened the door to privatising the NHS, allowing NHS hospitals to allocate up to 49% of care provision to private patients (as opposed to 2% previously). This will lead to a two-tier health service where less well off patients will suffer.

The Act removed the Government's legal duty to provide health care for all and paved the way for new local 'commissioning groups' to take control of buying hospital and other types of healthcare for patients. This means that the new Vale of York Commissioning Group will be under huge pressure to buy the cheapest possible care from private providers, who are lining up to make big profits from the changes.

Speakers represented hospital doctors, GPs, heath service trade unionists, local campaigners and politicians. The Green Party's lead candidate for the European election, Cllr Andrew Cooper from Kirklees, said 'The Green Party is 100% behind a publicly funded, publicly managed and publicly delivered National Health Service focused on prevention of illness, the promotion of good health and the treatment of those in need whatever their income or background. We believe the only shareholders who should benefit from the NHS are the public who fund it .'

Dr Gillian Creasy, a GP who is leader of the Green Group on Sheffield City Council, said the pressure on the NHS was already causing problems with care and urged people to support their new commissioning groups in striving to keep contracts public; to lobby politicians about their concerns and to exercise their right under the new legislation to register with their GP their preference to be offered care only from NHS providers and not from private companies.

See www.keepournhspublic.com for more information on what you can do.

Cllr Jillian Creasy Addressing the NHS rally

Cllr Andrew Cooper Addressing the NHS Rally


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