To understand NHS policy can feel like an insurmountable task. We have seen in recent years some very dramatic changes in policy. Our NHS has been restructured and then restructured again. The entire system of the NHS is now vastly more complex and includes many private sector bodies. In 2012 all this restructuring was sold to us by David Cameron as a more streamlined and less bureaucratic system. Our media failed to provide us with the detail we needed and we ended up with a system that closely resembles the US system of healthcare.
This lack of information about the politics of our NHS is one of the biggest hurdles for our campaign. And our Government has deliberately made it harder for people to get their heads around the changes. But unless we do gain some understanding we will lose our NHS.
On this page we have listed many useful resources available for anyone who wants to start understanding why we are losing our NHS.
Our Column in Bournefree magazine
The Eastbourne branch is writing a column every two weeks for the Bournefree magazine. Here are links to the columns we have had published.
NHS SOS -How the NHS was betrayed – and how we can save it by Jacky Davis and Raymond Tallis
Although published in 2013 so already out of date this book is a shocking account of how the Coalition Government betrayed us all. It details how the Health and Social Care Act made its way through parliament despite having no democratic mandate. This Act dramatically changed our NHS and opened the flood gates to privatisation. It betrayed the population and all who work in the NHS. This book is still worth reading today as it provides a backdrop to the situation we are seeing in the NHS now.
NHS FOR SALE -Myths, Lies and Deception by JackyDavis, John Lister and David Wrigley
This 2015 book details the various myths that have so often been used to justify changes to our NHS. The book details what the implications of the Health and Social Care Act have been. It sets out what needs to be done to protect our NHS against corporatee greed.
THE SHOCK DOCTRINE – by Naomi Klein
This book while not specifically about the NHS is hugely significant for NHS campaigners. It offers an impassioned, well-researched and controversial account of how neo-liberal economics took hold across the globe. Naomi Klein explores how chaotic situations such as war or other catastrophes have been exploited to remodel a nation’s economic system.
It is neo-liberal economic principles that have led to the privatisation of many public sector sector industries. They have led to our Government imposing austerity, de-regulating markets, disabling the unions and attacking workers rights. Margaret Thatcher virtually signed our country up to the principles of neo-liberalism. Every goverment since then has continued to push neo-liberalism into every corner of the UK. This is the reason why our NHS has been brought to its knees.
If you can’t read anything else make sure you read this one. We all need to understand not only how this model of economics is introduced but also what the end result looks like.
There are several film producers who have made excellent documentaries on our NHS
Groundswell – This film was produced by John Furse and describes the grassroots battle for the NHS and democracy. Follow this link to watch Groundswell on Vimeo.
Making a drama out of a crisis – this was produced by Varndean College Drama for Sussex Defend the NHS. It urges you to not get mad but get active. It is about how we call all defend the NHS.
NHS: the sell-off and The Great NHS Heist
These two films are produced by Dr Bob Gill a working GP and prominent campaigner. Both films aim to describe how we are moving closer and closer to an American style healthcare system here in the UK. They examine the realities of privatised healthcare both in the UK and in the USA. The Great NHS Heist is the more current film. Watch this interview with Dr Gill on YouTube. The Great NHS Heist is an up to date account of how our NHS is being destroyed. You can watch this film online by following this link. Please also consider donating to help fund the production of this film.
Sicko by Michael Moore This film is a 2008 documentary film which investigates healthcare in the United States and compares the US system to the systems in other nation including the UK. This is an old film but increasingly relevant to us today as we are witnessing our NHS being transformed into an American style system.
Under the Knife This was a film produced by Pam K Productions The film portrays the progressive marketisation of the NHS that began under Margaret Thatcher and details how this proceess has undermined our NHS. It asks the question how did we get to this point where our NHS is on the brink of complete destruction.
This campaign is affiliated to both Health Campaigns Together and Keep Our NHS Public. Both groups have excellent websites which we would strongly recommend. Health Campaigns Together also run a national newspaper which can be bought through their website. We have also worked closely with Sussex Defend the NHS at times and they were very supportive when this campaign was being set up. Another website we would recommend is the OpenDemocracy website.
There are many other resources that we have not listed on this page. We will add more as we come across them but please do let us know if you know of a book, film or website that you feel we should include. If you are on Facebook then you might like to join the East Sussex Save the NHS Campaign Forum group which is where many people are sharing information and discussing the NHS.