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999 Call for the NHS

A grassroots NHS campaign.

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Fighting to save our NHS from profiteers.

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By 999 Call for the NHS, Apr 22 2018 01:55PM

We are taking NHS England to court

As we make our way to Leeds Combined Court on Tuesday (24th April) this seems a good time to make that clear statement.


Not the NHS

We love the NHS - the one that used to exist before the (joke) fair-trade competitive market was allowed to sneak in back in the 80s and is now ripping its greedy claws into it since the 2012 Health & Social Care Act (2012 HSCA) gave it full permission to do so at every level.


NHS England is a QUANGO.

An arms length body (the lovely sounding ‘ALB’ abbreviation) that has NOTHING to do with delivering care just commissioning it. This means purchasing specialised NHS services and some Primary Care plus overseeing its Clinical Commissioning Groups which in turn purchase local health services from providers (sellers) of healthcare - thus creating that infamous phrase PURCHASER PROVIDER SPLIT.


NHS England was set up as an “independent body with executive powers and exceptional responsibilities” - part of the 2012 HSCA. Plans for it were prepped in 2011 and its full title is the The NHS Commissioning Board for England. The title says it all. Nothing to do with providing actual frontline patient care.




Interesting point to note is that the bill (Health & Social Care Act 2012) that created the demons NHS England, NHS Improvement - and the Clinical Commissioning Groups - was not mentioned anywhere in any party manifesto leading up to the 2010 election.


You could say there has never been a public mandate to carry out the massive top-down 2012 restructuring of the NHS that has resulted in administrative and bureaucratic chaos with over 200 Clinical Commissioning Groups purchasing healthcare from a wasteful and costly internal market involving a dazzling array of private companies and yet more accountants, lawyers and consultants all grasping the opportunity to make money out of the once world-leading public service NHS.


The NHS England Quango produced the 5 Year Forward View (5YFV) which gave birth to the Sustainability & Transformation Plans/Partnerships which in turn gave rise to the notion of (intended to morph into?) Accountable Care Organisations - encouraging the mantra of “integration” and “doing nothing is not an option” that has so successfully turned the heads of middle management, think tanks like the Kings Fund and Health Foundation, plus MPs and local councillors across the entire political spectrum.


It’s clear that “integration” in QuangoSpeak focuses on management integration (consolidating more control to one organisation and pooling or aligning budgets) and has very little to do with ‘joined-up’ delivery of actual patient treatment services. It’s about money and changing the shape and nature of the NHS which is seen by those seeking profit as “unsustainable” - QuangoSpeak means “makes no money”.


Campaigners all over the country are seeing the continued fragmentation and breakup of services. Management and finance are getting stronger, patient safety and care are being decimated.


What the Duck?

And don't be bamboozled by the everchanging NameChange Lingo Bingo that is going on. You know the saying - if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck...




So we are challenging NHS England the arms length QUANGO at Leeds Combined Courts on Tuesday 24th April. They have set the agenda to introduce an Accountable Care Organisation contract using what is known as a Whole Population Annual Payment (WPAP) which will dictate a whole new way of funding the NHS and a whole new way of behaviour by providers of care.


Take a minute to read this and think.




What’s your answer? We know what ours is: This will lead to a culture of care based on finance considerations and profit, forcing providers to act and think like insurance companies. It will also lead to a two tier health system based on the USA Medicare model - providing basic minimum treatments for those too poor or sick to be allowed private health insurance.


Talking of money do we know how much the QUANGOS are costing us? Take a peek.**Comes with a heart safety warning. THE SHOCKING COSTS OF QUANGOS


This is not the NHS we want. And right now nowhere in legislation does it say that NHS England can radically alter the NHS as we know it. If they and the government want to change the NHS to a more USA style setup then they need to publicly and democratically say so.


It’s time to explore the Q-FACTOR - the QUANGO - the Quasi Autonomous Non Governmental Organisation regime that has been allowed to grow on our political system like the fuzzy mould on that piece of cheese in the fridge that stays there in the hope you might use it in cooking. You know it should go in the bin right? Or at least cut the mould off!


We are proud to have so many campaigners from a round the country joining us at 9am on Tuesday for a rally before going into Leeds Courts. This is a case that really does affect us all.


Please support us in any way you can.



By 999 Call for the NHS, Mar 20 2018 02:28PM

Steven Carne

Tues 20th March


To my horror this morning I came across a supreme example of all that we have been warning about for some time: profiteering private companies moving into controlling positions of our NHS, edging aside publicly accountable NHS organisations and local authorities.


The news? Well for those of us who know the familiar chess moves of the privateers it seems that USA’s Centene - through its subsidiary Centene UK -may be set to take over the NHS Commissioner’s role in a recently- awarded £206m community services contract, once the Greater Nottingham Accountable Care System is implemented.


This would allow the company to manage the contract and determine/influence the award of any sub-contracts – effectively closing that much talked about problematic "Purchaser Provider Split". What better way to solve it than to allow a private company controlling a local health and social care system to be able to commission itself?


Centene UK’s discredited subsidiary Ribera Salud – which is being kicked out of the Spanish public health service by the Valencia Green/Podemos/Socialist government –  has just appointed former New Labour Health Secretary Alan Milburn as a Director and has sent lots of executives to the UK to help Centene UK with its plan of buying primary care and mental health companies. Am I just imagining it?


It seems campaigners' worst fears may be being realised. Now we have to decide what are we all going to do to stop this happening.


First of all, let’s not be like the Trojans



I remember making a speech in Manchester in 2015 in Manchester. I was speaking about the dangers of DEVOMANC, which was being rolled out after secretive meetings between ten Labour Councils and then Chancellor George Osborne (look at the expression on Osborne's face below).


The spin was that devolving £6bn NHS funding to Greater Manchester local authorities with an elected Mayor and LOCAL decision making body, would enable the public and councillors and community leaders to make better decisions, control the destiny of their LOCAL environment, communities...


My speech was all about the mythical Trojan Horse. The long suffering people of Troy welcomed the Wooden Horse into their gates believing they had won the long war and the Greeks were leaving - only to be butchered and slaughtered at night by the soldiers contained within the belly of the wooden structure...


For me this is a symbol of what is happening now in our NHS.


Pretty sure local people in Manchester can tell us more about what their horse is looking like.




So waking up this morning to the Nottingham alert about their Sustainability & Transformation Plam reminded me of Manchester. They are both in the first group of local NHS and social care services to become an Accountable Care System and the image of that Trojan Horse loomed in my head as the possibility of its treacherous shell being dragged in and celebrated by the unsuspecting public appeared to be very real.


Yesterday's blog post reported Nottingham Clinical Commissioning Group’s award of a £206m out-of-hospital community services contract to a non-NHS community interest company.


As if that’s not bad enough, this new contract seemingly includes the strange proviso that when the Greater Nottingham Accountable Care System is set up (presumably hoping two national Judicial Reviews will not touch them) there will be a contract variation - saying that it is likely to replace the Clinical Commissioning Group with a “Care Integrator” - oh surpise... Centene.


Quick reminder:

USA corporation awarded a £2.7m contract last summer to help set up the Greater Nottingham Accountable Care System.

Shares in Ribera Salud the now-disgraced private healthcare company currently being investigated for fraud and being kicked out by Valencia government

Alan Milburn is now on the Board of RIbera Salud

Their execs over here supporting Centene


Alarm bells anyone? Read the whole shocking article by CLICKING HERE


So...don't be a Trojan and dont let councillors claim


It's All Greek To Me!


That's not good enough. Put them on the spot. Especially with urban council elections coming up. Let's make our elected representatives and local NHS organisatisations come clean about EXACTLY what the local Sustainabilty and Transformation Partnership’s plans are for becoming an Accountable Care System (which NHS England is currently redecorating as Integrated Care systems to escape those pesky American health care connotations).


In most areas, there will be plans for both STP “footprint” and “locality” Accountable/Integrated Care Systems. Ask them questions and demand some answers.


What happens when a private company assumes the NHS commissioner’s role in a complex contract involving many Accountable Care System “partners” - both NHS and corporate?


Are they happy with the possibility of a private company in charge of a massive contract for a period of 7 years or more? Thus making it impossible for the next government - whoever they are - to change the circumstances?


And what about the lack of public accountability - since as a private company they will claim COMMERCIAL CONFIDENTIALITY and will not answer to Freedom of Information requests? Commercial interests are one thing. What about patient and medical interests?


And lo the Horse did stand in the centre of the city and the good people did sleep

Unware of the army inside the belly of the beast...



Take a look at your LOCAL politics. Behind the mask of devolution - seemingly benign and helpful and progressive in its concern that LOCAL Councillors and public service organisations are seen to be participating in LOCAL decision making - is there yet more shrinking of the government's duty to protect the welfare of the whole population through good quality healthcare, education, social care... ?


Is your area talking about LOCAL control, more joined up thinking, an elected regional mayor, with Council cabinets making executive decisions that the full Council doesn’t get to debate or vote on?All under the guise of making politics more LOCAL, ACCOUNTABLE and INTEGRATED for the local population?


The glorious Trojan Horse that is Accountable Care.


It is time to say NO to Accountable Care - don't be bamboozled by the name changes and games that some local councils are playing. Visit our latest #NHS4ALL page to find out more.


There are things we can and must do.


Visit #NHS4ALL


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