“The unhappy and growing tendency to regard healthcare as a commodity is not serving the people of the UK well.”— President of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health
Tools & Guides
For a guide to Health and Wellbeing Boards – what they are and how to influence them – see http://www.keepournhspublic.com/policybriefings.php and scroll to ‘Briefing on Health and Wellbeing Boards’.
For information on challenging government decisions on the NHS through judicial review, see http://www.keepournhspublic.com/policybriefings.php and scroll to ‘Advice on the use of Judicial Review”.
Unite has produced a useful guide comparing the old and new structures of the NHS (after the HSC Act), the impact of privatisation and how to take action: see http://www.unitetheunion.org/uploaded/documents/GuideToNHSPrivatisation11-10734.pdf
This guide by the Department of Health presents a very rosy view of the NHS, downplaying the way it is being privatised. However, it provides a useful explanation of the new structure of the NHS. In addition, its supplement on accountability can provide useful information for members of the public who want to challenge decision-making at different levels of the NHS structure. See https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/194002/9421-2900878-TSO-NHS_Guide_to_Healthcare_WEB.PDF
This helpful guide to fighting privatisation at a local level is available from http://www.keepournhspublic.com/pdf/tentips.pdf
NHS Networks has produced a series, “The Smart Guides”, for everyone working in or with Clinical Commissioning Groups. The guides provide advice on all aspects of patient and public engagement: http://www.networks.nhs.uk/nhs-networks/smart-guides and include ‘Practices and Patient Involvement‘, and ‘Working with LINks and Healthwatch‘.
The NHS Support Foundation has a very useful campaign guide, giving details of
- how to start a campaign,
- useful tools and techniques for campaigning,
- suggestions for who to contact,
- how to work with an MP,
- how to hold your local NHS to account,
- how to use the law to help your campaing, and
- a list of campaigning groups across the country.
Keep Our NHS Public (KONP) point out that services for older patients are easy targets for NHS Trusts trying to balance their books, and elderly care services are bearing the brunt of NHS cuts. They have produced a ‘Pensioners’ Leaflet’, equally useful for other groups, outlining our rights to a public consultation before any decision can be taken about reducing or closing services, and what to do if your NHS Trust does not consult properly. See http://www.keepournhspublic.com/pdf/PensionersLeaflet.pdf .
One way of resisting closures or cuts in NHS services in your area is to make a legal challenge. For an introduction on how to go about this, see http://www.keepournhspublic.com/pdf/RichardSteinlegalrightsofpatients.pdf.
The trades union Unison has produced a useful guide to ways of influencing the new NHS, “Stronger together”http://www.unison.org.uk/acrobat/21118.pdf
The Corporate Europe Observatory provides an excellent guide to the investor state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism: http://corporateeurope.org/international-trade/2014/04/still-not-loving-isds-10-reasons-oppose-investors-super-rights-eu-trade . ISDS is currently an important part of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and if not removed from this agreement, will have devastating consequences, such as preventing the reversal of the privatisation of the NHS. (See http://www.patients4nhs.org.uk/eu-us-free-tra…eement-or-ttip/ for more information on TTIP.)