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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.

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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

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