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999 Call for the NHS

A grassroots NHS campaign. Not affiliated to any of the political parties.

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By 999 Call for the NHS, Mar 7 2019 06:09PM


999 Call for the NHS is urging everyone to write to their MP to support NHS EDM #2013 which is an Early Day Motion called a “Prayer” Motion. It’s the only type of motion that can annul and stop secondary legislation.


This is urgent because the Department of Health has “quietly” introduced secondary legislation, in the form of a Statutory Instrument, to make major changes to NHS regulations that will damage the way in which GP/Primary Care and Commissioning works - and of course it will not benefit patients or staff.


We are asking MPs to use parliamentary procedure to call this legislation into question and annul the Statutory Instrument


Please visit our Prayer Motion page to find a LETTER TO MY MP template and more information. This is urgent we have until March 24th to get this annulled. It can be done.



Secondary legislation? What the Duck is all that about then?


In the light of raised eyebrows and lots of questions since we launched the Prayer Motion campaign - this blog post explains what secondary legislation is, when it was created and how it has been used and abused since it was introduced in the Statutory Instruments Act 1946.


The Parliament UK website says that:


Secondary legislation is law created by ministers (or other bodies) under powers given to them by an Act of Parliament - the Statutory Instruments Act 1946. It  is used to fill in the details of Acts (primary legislation). These details provide practical measures that enable the  law to be enforced and operate in daily life. 


Most secondary legislation is created, 'made and laid' as a Statutory Instrument.


Statutory Instruments (SI) were intended as a device to allow Ministers to make minor updates and amend existing Bills without bothering the House of Commons (or indeed any part of parliament) - allowing ministers to deal with localised and/or minor issues and changes to law without time-wasting debates in the Commons.


That’s the theory. The practice seems to be a bit different.





THE BIG CONCERN


The theory sounds like common sense, sort of... Until you notice the sharp upward trend in the use of Statutory Instruments through the Thatcher Years, into New Labour and the last ten years of this thing we call ‘Austerity’ government.


The red lines in the table below show a huge disparity between the number of actual ACTS (Primary Legislation passed in the Commons & Lords) and the number of Statutory Instruments.






By and large, because of the way they are made (the Negative Procedure), Statutory Instruments are only seen by ministerial committees. This means there is NO opposition oversight of or input into these legislative changes. In the case of this Statutory Instrument - it is not even required to have even nominal scrutiny by the cross-party-house Joint Committee of Statutory Instruments (Select Committee).


What’s the point of having Parliamentary opposition if it can’t oppose? To use the Mainstream Media’s classic line “where's the balance?” One party state, anyone?



Latest figures on the number of SI’s passing through unseen? The House of Commons Background Paper on Statutory Instruments (2016) says:


In the region of 3,500 SIs are made each year. Many SIs are not subject to any parliamentary procedure, and simply become law on the date stated. Whether they are subject to parliamentary procedure, and if so which one, is determined by the parent Act.


On top of this,look at the size of these Statutory Instruments. Given the number of pages, can they really contain only minor amendments and non-vital pieces of policy making?





According to Bracknell: “Statutory Instruments vary enormously in their scope from substantial pieces of legislation to considerable numbers of orders temporarily restricting traffic on particular local roads.”

The full easy-to-read Bracknell report is here: https://vdocuments.site/acts-and-statutory-instruments.html


So we have to ask - are Statutory Instruments now a way of changing Acts and regulations without Parliamentary debate and proper scrutiny?


If so much paperwork filled with items, appendices and addendums is passing through the corridors of parliament unseen by most MPs and Lords, is it any wonder that we are crying out “Democracy? What Democracy?”


This concern applies with a vengeance to Statutory Instrument 2019 No.248 The Amendments Relating to the Provision of Integrated Care Regulations 2019. It contains pages and pages of guff.


You can see for yourself - and pay special attention to PART 9 & 10.



It's a good job there is an Explanatory Memorandum to SI 2019#248 - be warned it’s uncomfortable reading but at least it’s in an English most MPs and members of the public can understand - if they were given the chance to read it of course.






If you haven't already please help make this happen. Don't be confused by Parliamentary Procedure.


Write to your MP from our Prayer Motion Page


Many thanks.












By 999 Call for the NHS, Aug 9 2018 12:35PM

Steve Carne keeps getting dragged into the pit...



The image of vicious piranhas fighting for flesh, (made in desire for a dramatic context I confess in yesterdays blog about Babylon), seems to be ever more relevant and continues to grow as more corporate quibbling and quarreling now truly "disrupts" every layer of the once public service NHS.


Including the basics of supplies and logistical planning that supports the once joined-up network of hospitals and healthcare NHS units (clinics etc.) All under the guise of greater integration of course and using the Carter Review 2015 which called for something called the Procurement Transformation Programme (PTP) which has led to the Future Operating Model (FOM!) and its new rather confusing logistical planning landscape.


NHS Supply Chain Logistics is now being revamped (not a top-down reorganisation you understand nobody likes them do they?) at the end of September it seems - after DHL have run it since 2006.


And even though Health Care Supplies Association (HCSA) in 2016 thought that the commercial procurement arrangements with the outsourced service NHS Supply Chain were working well and should be extended NHS and they warned that "New NHS PRocurement structures may be disastrous" - NHS Procurement, NHS Improvement and Uncle Tom Cobblybollox and all have decided that it's best if NHS Supply Chain is revamped into something called the Future Operating Model (FOM) and 'has been designed to realise £615m of savings in real terms over the next 3 years (2018-21).'


ELEVEN TOWERS


Yes apparently the new structure is all about Towers. Category Towers. Stick with me as I attempt to climb the dark staircase...


So NHS resources - things to buy, sorry PROCURE - are now divided up into these Eleven Category Towers (which Lord of the Rings numpty thought that one up I wonder?) So below, courtesy of Dept of Health info pdf is a simple chart of these Eleven Categories. Bottom Right is interesting...






The Health Care Supplies Association (HCSA) says "the eleven tower system is hard to understand" - but they shouldn't be alarmed because apparently there are 200 very intelligent people employed to become the Intelligent Client Coordinator... fingers crossed.



Still with me?


Blimey so... what this is supposed to do (apparently) is save money through making more resources flow through less broken up chains of command - we assume. Sort of what it must have been like before the tendering competitive market moved in - back in the 90's - and festered until getting the boost it needed in 2012 with the Health & Social Care Act that did all the damage. The Dept of Health kindly offer a nice graphic to help us get the picture.



Trouble is ...


this is where the piranha-profit fish now get really pissed off cos they are missing a meal and they see other corporate piranhas munching into their prey. And DHL are pissed off enough to take the Dept of Health to court claiming that the tendering process is faulty because they haven't been given a big enough slice of the dish.


You see to make it fair the Dept of Health thought best if procurement companies were only allowed to take hold of THREE TOWERS at a time (joined-up thinking see?). DHL already have three towers - the procurement of large diagnostic capital devices, ward-based consumables, and infection control /wound care.


But what they are really pissed off about is the fact that after 13years of being the logistical handler of the NHS Supply Chain they have now lost out to UNIPART.


And it's a fairly big contract... look. Estimated £730million over 5 years...




So Unipart are happy no doubt trolling about twixt towers. And they do have good experience in the "Unipart Way" - oh yes that old Toyota Car Factory chestnut the Lean Management System is something they are enormously proud of. I expect NHS Managers up and down the country will be clapping their little hands because they understand that after their three-day "how can we show Compassion whilst burning the workforce" training course.




Well Unipart can keep their hands well away from my bottom thank you very much.


The whole point is...


What the hell are we doing letting all these multi-national businesses scramble our public services in search of ever-more profit? Just like piranhas the smell of blood money is overpowering and will dominate their motives and actions. How can they be allwwed to hold to ransom the Department of Health? Or any of our government departments?


How this all fits into the other NHS restructures and redisorganisations is the next step to understand. Campaigners are often told by politicians on both sides of the House that the NHS can't afford another Top-Down ReOrganisation. Seriously we can't afford not to once and for all take the big step and bring the NHS back into public control. The poor NHS has been and still is (frontline staff will tell you) being attacked and thrown into chaos by more and more corporate top-down changes usually requiring yet more top-down levels to provide muddy transparency.


The shrinking, cutting and slashing we have all seen over the last four years (more I know now) is nothing more than the government desired move to a reduced, poor-quality NHS based on the USA system with corporates like DHL and Unipart taking more control and more money out of the system with their in-fighting and board room battles.


And once companies learn they can use the courts to fight their commercial interests and "bugger the conequences" there is no stopping them. After all they can afford it. And the prize is probably worth it. Eventually local councils, public departments will have to give in just because they can't keep on paying costs.


Meanwhile people die. Paramedics and many many NHS staff watch them die. And they know there is a better way. It's not the Unipart Way. It's the Reinstatement of the NHS Way. There has never been a more urgent time for campaigners and public alike to understand that we are about to hand over the NHS to a bunch of piranhas.


The only way now is renationalise the health system - bring back the values of a healthcare system based on equality and the improvement of people's lives. In that there is hope of a better society and future.


The public service model NHS used to be a world leader in that.



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