11 March 2016

Brighton Demonstration to Send off Caroline Lucas MP – the Proposer of NHS Reinstatement Bill

Peter Kyle - Hove Labour MP Opposes Bill because the Private Sector provides 'innovation' in the NHS

Caroline Lucas MP addressing the demonstrators before setting off for the House of Commons
On a cold and wintry Friday morning, about 100 demonstrators, together with a samba band, gave a send off at Brighton railway station to Caroline Lucas, the Green MP for Brighton Pavilion and the proposer of the NHS Reinstatement Bill.
Momentum supporters from Brighton Labour Party in support of the NHS Reinstatement Bill
A group of us from the Labour Party were at the picket from Momentum in order to emphasise that this was a Bill deserving of support from socialists in the Labour Party.  
demonstration at Brighton station
I was told that the New Labour Tory Lite MP for Hove, Peter Kyle, was not going to support the Bill as he supports the involvement of the private sector NHS.  Kyle is the pro-war MP for Hove who was probably to  the right of the losing Tory candidate at the last election, Graham Cox!

If it is true that Kyle opposed the bill because he believes that innovation only comes from the private sector in the NHS, as opposed to grubbing around for profits that could be used for the benefit of all, then Kyle deserves to be censured by the District Labour Party in Brighton for scabbing on the NHS.

The purpose of the Bill is to repair some of the damage to the NHS caused by the Tory/Lib Dem Health & Social Care Act 2012 and to fully restore the NHS as an accountable public service by reversing 25 years of marketization in the NHS, by abolishing the purchaser-provider split, ending contracting and re-establishing public bodies and public services accountable to local communities.
This is necessary to stop the dismantling of the NHS under the Health and Social Care Act 2012. It is driven by the needs of local communities. Scotland and Wales have already reversed marketization and restored their NHS without massive upheaval. England can too.
The Bill gives flexibility in how it would be implemented, led by local authorities and current bodies.
It would:
  • reinstate the government’s duty to provide the key NHS services throughout England, including hospitals, medical and nursing services, primary care, mental health and community services,
  • integrate health and social care services,
  • declare the NHS to be a “non-economic service of general interest” and “a service supplied in the exercise of governmental authority” so asserting the full competence of Parliament and the devolved bodies to legislate for the NHS without being trumped by EU competition law and the World Trade Organization’s General Agreement on Trade in Services,
  • abolish the NHS Commissioning Board (NHS England) and re-establish it as a Special Health Authority with regional committees,
  • plan and provide services without contracts through Health Boards, which could cover more than one local authority area if there was local support,
  • allow local authorities to lead a ‘bottom up’ process with the assistance of clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), NHS trusts, NHS foundation trusts and NHS England to transfer functions to Health Boards,
  • Defend NHS Speaker
  • abolish NHS trusts, NHS foundation trusts and CCGs after the transfer by 1st January 2018,
  • abolish Monitor – the regulator of NHS foundation trusts, commercial companies and voluntary organisations – and repeal the competition and core marketization provisions of the 2012 Act,
  • integrate public health services, and the duty to reduce inequalities, into the NHS,
  • re-establish Community Health Councils to represent the interest of the public in the NHS,
  • stop licence conditions taking effect which have been imposed by Monitor on NHS foundation trusts and that will have the effect of reducing by April 2016 the number of services that they currently have to provide,
  • require national terms and conditions under the NHS Staff Council and Agenda for Change system for relevant NHS staff,
  • centralise NHS debts under the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) in the Treasury, require publication of PFI contracts and also require the Treasury to report to Parliament on reducing NHS PFI debts,
  • abolish the legal provisions passed in 2014 requiring certain immigrants to pay for NHS services
  • declare the UK’s agreement to the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and other international treaties affecting the NHS to require the prior approval of Parliament and the devolved legislatures,
  • require the government to report annually to Parliament on the effect of treaties on the NHS.

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