Our media is there to inform us. It is a crucial body in the running of any democracy. By providing citizens with factual information as to what the authorities are doing they empower us all. Without that factual information we stand no chance of being able to challenge decisions of authorities that may damage our lives. Democracy is about us having a say in how our country is run, but as far as the NHS is concerned our media seems to be removing any chance of democratic decisions being made. This won’t just damage our lives it can, and is, ending lives.
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Searching online for information regarding the politics of the NHS reaps little reward unless you move away from the main media sites. There are some fantastic NHS campaign groups that have hugely informative websites. There are some great books that have been written, often by clinicians, which are equally informative. But for the person who doesn’t search for the information, who makes his democratic choices from the information given in the establishment media, there is little to explain why he may be experiencing all sorts of problems when he tries to access healthcare.
Most of our media has covered the current winter crisis that exists in our hospitals. Some have even said that it is the worst winter crisis seen in the history of the NHS. But why? Here the information is sparse, or even incorrect.
They have blamed immigrants, NHS inefficiencies, the spending of the last Labour government, the need to make ‘difficult choices’ or simply put it all down to a funding crisis. Jeremy Hunt has been on TV talking about how this government is spending more than ever on the NHS, how they are hoping to recruit more NHS nurses and doctors and how they are aiming to make the NHS sustainable. All sounds good really except it doesn’t explain why people are dying in hospital corridors and it doesn’t stop them dying either.
Our government is spending more than ever on the NHS but too much of that spend goes nowhere near covering the cost of treating patients. Since 2010 we haven’t even kept up with inflation when we increased funding to the NHS.
We are putting money into a system made inefficient by the Health and Social Care Act 2012. We are funding PFI deals which leave the NHS paying over the top for the building of new hospitals. The process of putting services out to tender and awarding contracts that was started in 2012 is costing upwards of £9bn / year. Our NHS is picking up the problems caused by inadequate funding that goes into social care. As far as making the system sustainable our politicians are supporting the secretive process of drawing up Sustaniabilty and Transformation Plans (STP) that offer nothing more than cuts to funding and will cost £8bn to implement. Our NHS workforce has been fighting what must at times feel like a losing battle to keep the nation healthy, in an era when poverty is making more of us ill, despite working in a system where money is wasted. They are exhausted, demoralised but still caring. For some it has been too much, they have left for other countries, left their professions and become ill themselves. One in nine NHS vacancies are now vacant leaving the country to fund a massive bill for agency staff and locum doctors.
NHS England is a front for an organisation geared up to assisting private healthcare corporations expand their profits at the expense of our NHS. Decisions regarding the running of our NHS are now removed from Government and removed from the democratic process of debates and voting in the House of Commons. They have been given free reign to do whatever it takes to allow illnesss and suffering in the UK to be translated into profits for the wealthy. NHS money is even being directed towards profits of the private management consultancy firms such as McKinsey and KPMG who are paid to draw up plans for how the NHS can be destroyed.
Why are we not being told this by the organisations who are there to keep us informed? Why are we not seeing endless documentaries on our TV channels to explain what is happening in the NHS today? Why are so many people so utterly misguided that they believe all sorts of farsical explanations about why problems exist in our NHS?
Stop blaming the immigrants, they are the people who will treat you if you need NHS care, so please recognise this is simply racist. Stop blaming the last Labour government, since 2010 our national debt has more than doubled. Think about how many people have left working for the NHS when you hear the politicians talk about how many they have recruited. Think carefully about the burden of inadequate social care on our NHS. Don’t fall for the Slash, Trash and Privatise talk of our government. Stop talking about the inadquate levels of care and talk about the inadeqaute system that has developed sincee 2010 in our NHS. Remember it’s OUR NHS!!!
It would be great to see some letters being sent to our newspapers, radio stations and TV networks about this.