This website has been set up by a group of patients to share information about how the NHS is changing and why. We are not a membership group but work alongside other groups and campaigns that are defending our NHS.
What is happening to the NHS?
The NHS has been one of the best and most cost-effective health care systems in the world.* But it is now in crisis.
Of the many challenges that the NHS faces, the most significant threat to its future comes from government policies and legislation, including
- The Health and Social Care Act (2012), which brought in massive restructuring and turned the NHS into a competitive market and accelerated privatisation;
- Underfunding and financial cuts, with demands for crippling ‘efficiency savings’;
- The removal of government funding for new facilities, forcing many NHS organisations to use private finance (the Private Finance Initiative) and take on unmanageable debt;
- A new Five Year Plan that fragments the NHS into new local health systems. These ‘footprints’ have to develop Sustainability and Transformation Plans to radically reshape and cut services. This new round of restructuring sets the scene for an NHS that’s more like a US-type insurance based system and allows more scope for private companies to both plan and provide services.
Opening up the NHS to competition has also made it vulnerable to inclusion in trade and investment agreements (such as CETA) and the extraction of NHS funding by multinational corporations. These deals may also include mechanisms that make the privatisation of the NHS irreversible.
How can we stop this?
This website aims to provide patients and the general public with up to date information about what is happening to the NHS in England.
The website also provides resources (e.g.articles, videos and blogs) and an explanation of terms that you may come across. There is also a patients4nhs leaflet that explains what is happening to the NHS. This can be downloaded and printed off by anyone wanting to use it to campaign for the NHS.
We hope you will support us by passing on the website link to others.