Blackpool demo highlights 'crisis' in NHS

Campaigners at Blackpool Victoria Hospital
Campaigners at Blackpool Victoria Hospital
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Campaigners held a demonstration at Blackpool Victoria Hospital to highlight their fears for the future of the NHS.

Members of groups including Blackpool Against Cuts, 38 Degrees and the Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre Trade Union Council formed a peaceful picket line at the hospital.

They handed out leaflets focusing on their concerns for the health service and the way it is funded by the government.

Ken Cridland, chairman of Blackpool Against Cuts, said they had received a good response.

He said: “The NHS is already in crisis. What the Government is now up to on the NHS is gob-smacking and we are facing problems going way beyond the shortage of funding.

“Bit by bit, the Government is selling off NHS land, buildings and services to make even more cuts in our public health service.

“In the long term, we will all pay dearly for this, just like we are doing already with PFI (the private finance initiative).

“We will be paying through the nose to private health providers whose priorities are neither our health, nor being democratically accountable to us.”

Campaigners are angry at proposals which could see parts of the NHS sold off.

The Naylor Review published last year sets out recommendations on how the Government can fund NHS reforms by selling land it no longer needs and buildings that are costly to maintain.

The Naylor Review was set up to look at how NHS property and land could be used to generate money to invest in patient care.