DEMAND AN END TO POVERTY THIS GENERAL ELECTION
TAKE ACTION
Opinion

Selling off our NHS piece by piece

Readers share their concerns about how both the Labour Party and Conservatives appear to be set on dismantling the NHS.

NHS workers protest with placards that say 'Do Virgin Care'

Healthcare workers protested in 2015 when news of Virgin's contracts in the NHS came to light. Image: Flickr

The Tories have always been against the NHS. Even going back to its inception in 1946 when Churchill railed against it and vehemently vilified Nye Bevan for his part in setting up the institution.

Then on to Thatcher who split it into separate NHS trusts and forced them to arrange a tender system to enable outside companies to profit from works. 

Then we had the May government following on from Cameron, cutting funding to make it not fit for purpose, when they will sell off all the profitable parts to their business friends to make more millions out of what should be a state-run national service again, as it was meant to be. 

This process has already started, so many bits are now in private company hands. The likes of Carillion and Capita run lots of different parts of the system.

Your support changes lives. Find out how you can help us help more people by signing up for a subscription

Smaller companies are taking over other parts, eg, Chime now doing hearing aids, very often by the same people who did it for the NHS but now get paid less. Have you tried to find an NHS dentist? It’s almost impossible. 

Two billion pounds. That is a huge number isn’t it? It’s only the amount of NHS cash given to Virgin over the past five years to run bits of our National Health Service.  

Tony B, Axminster 

Sajid Javid calls openly for charges for GP appointments and for visits to A&E, because Wes Streeting has given permission for such proposals to be made by the people who have spent 50 years itching to make them.

As health secretary, Streeting would not abolish such charges if they were already in place. NHS privatisation would now face no official opposition. By endorsing Streeting’s views, Keir Starmer has effectively named him as his successor in the course of the next Parliament.

But Starmer’s dishonesty is becoming a story. He lied to his party members to get their votes, so he would lie to anyone else to get their votes. We are heading for a hung Parliament.

To strengthen families and communities by securing economic equality and international peace through the democratic political control of the means to those ends, including national and parliamentary sovereignty, we need to hold the balance of power.

Owing nothing to either main party, we must be open to the better offer. There does, however, need to be a better offer. Not a lesser evil. Which in any case the Labour Party is not.

David Lindsay, Lanchester

Get the latest news and insight into how the Big Issue magazine is made by signing up for the Inside Big Issue newsletter

Support the Big Issue

For over 30 years, the Big Issue has been committed to ending poverty in the UK. In 2024, our work is needed more than ever. Find out how you can support the Big Issue today.
Vendor martin Hawes

Recommended for you

View all
UK's state pension is one of the lowest in Europe. It's the main reason for misery among retirees
state pension/ retirees
Lord Prem Sikka

UK's state pension is one of the lowest in Europe. It's the main reason for misery among retirees

Dear Sunak and Starmer: Workplace mental health is too serious to be used as a political football
Poppy Jaman

Dear Sunak and Starmer: Workplace mental health is too serious to be used as a political football

There's no debate – the fate of the UK will not be decided by big mouth over small mouth
John Bird

There's no debate – the fate of the UK will not be decided by big mouth over small mouth

Number of pensioners in poverty will double by 2040 unless next government acts
pensioner poverty
Joanna Elson

Number of pensioners in poverty will double by 2040 unless next government acts

Most Popular

Read All
Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits
Renters: A mortgage lender's window advertising buy-to-let products
1.

Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal
Pound coins on a piece of paper with disability living allowancve
2.

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal

Cost of living payment 2024: Where to get help now the scheme is over
next dwp cost of living payment 2023
3.

Cost of living payment 2024: Where to get help now the scheme is over

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know
4.

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know