Health News Blog

Edited by Ken Kirk

Copy of FUND OUR NHS (8)

28th July 2021

Nurses pay falls 7% even after pay offer
Figures produced by the TUC show that NHS workers pay will have dropped by over 7% in real terms in just over a decade, even after factoring in the 3% rise offered last week.

NHS workers "Do more for less"
Is £26000 a good enough wage? Nurse Niaomi Gordon explains why it isn't. They are risking their lives, there are 100,000 vacancies in the NHS, largely left unfilled owing to underfunding causing excessive workload.

Test and Trace civil servants paid more than £200,000
Department of Health and Social Care officers are paid handsomely for their work on our "world-beating" Test and Trace system. This isn't included in the £37 billion paid to private companies like Serco.

Sage scientist "accused ministers of allowing infections to rip"
After the remaining Covid restrictions were eased, Professor Robert West said rhetoric about caution is ‘a way of putting blame on public'. He stated the government was allowing infections to rip through the younger population in an effort to bolster levels of immunity before the NHS faces winter pressures.

GP surgeries are rejecting migrants
A survey reveals that more than two-thirds of the GPs they contacted rejected attempts to register without proof of address, identification, or legal immigration status.

Councils state their conditions for ICS
There's a paywall here, but local authorities in Cheshire and Merseyside have written to their ICS stating, amongst other points, that NHS spending should be determined in partnership with local government and local access to the “full range of NHS services” should be guaranteed to all communities. I suspect the ICS can't guarantee these.

Well respected GP campaigner dies
Politicians and campaigners lead tributes to Dr Kailash Chand. "The staunchest supporters of our national health service", "fearless defender of our NHS campaigning against privatisation", "the most committed and passionate NHS campaigner that I have ever met."

23rd July 2021

Nurses have lost over £1500 in pay
After taking inflation into account nurses have lost over £1500 in annual pay since 2011. Here's a chart of the different groups of NHS workers showing how they have fared since 2011.

NHS leaders dismayed: they have to fund pay rise
Hospital trusts, already massively underfunded compared with nearly every other developed nation, will have fund most of the nurses' pay rise; from existing budgets. This must impact the levels of care they provide.

Is 3% an adequate reward?
The inflation rate for this year is 3.7%. Is a 3% rise for nurses a fair reward for their efforts through the pandemic? No wonder the NHS is struggling to recruit staff.

NHS data grab: September target dropped
Even the revised September deadline has been cancelled as the government says it is  "committed to improving the way patients can see how their data is used, including publishing which organisations have used what type of data." Do you trust them?

19th July 2021

GPs refuse to hand over data
Some GPs are refusing to hand over patients’ data to NHS Digital unless the Department of Health and Social Care for England commits to a list of demands about patient consent and confidentiality.

NHS Bill will add risks due to Covid and winter flu
There's an HSJ paywall but in this article an ICS leader says there are demanding changes that will take place in the second half of 2021 that are difficult for NHS partners who will need to transition large numbers of staff. What "transition" does she envisage I wonder?

Hostile environment left fearful NHS patients avoiding treatment
Patients at Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust faced bills of thousands of pounds while living on benefits or without any income. The trust referred 1,085 debts more than any other trust. Under government rules all NHS Trusts have a statutory obligation to identify patients who are not entitled to free NHS treatment and to charge them.

The NHS Bill: Treasury power grab and more privatisation
The bill imposes an iron grip on costs in terms of cash for local NHS services, whilst dramatically watering down the public’s rights to what healthcare we have a right to receive.

Trust chief told by NHSE not to warn of 19th July unlock
There's a paywall here, but in essence three CEO of NHS trusts have been refused permission to warn that unlocking risks putting unsustainable pressure on the NHS by increasing the number of covid positive patients.

Firm with links to Hancock given VIP treatment
Emails between Department of Health officials appear to contradict denials of a VIP or “fast track” process for firms with political connections. The Animal Health Trust based in Newmarket, Hancock's constituency, was given a contract.

13th July 2021

12 questions on GP 'data grab' answered. From ‘who owns my data?’, ‘can government force GPs to hand over data?’ to the misleading claim that opting out will affect your medical care, OpenDemocracy gives the answers.

“NHS” – a logo for partially privatised healthcare. The principles underlying the creation of the National Health Service exemplify solidarity: comprehensive care for all, without charge, publicly owned and provided, funded from taxation. Now we have an underfunded system bent on saving money and denying care. How did we get here? 

NHS 73rd birthday protestsNHS campaigners call for end to underfunding. Chair of KONP said “The weakened NHS has been stretched to breaking point by Covid and the population has suffered. Staff are underpaid, overworked and their health put in danger. The new health bill threatens further large scale private contracting.”

Open letter from BMJ to Sajid Javid on pandemicThe British Medical Journal published an open letter advising our new health secretary on handling Covid. Llifting restrictions is a “colossal natural experiment which will put wave three into a super-exponential growth phase”, and the “chaos and waste that has been NHS Test and Trace show no sign of abating, with the government refusing to properly support people who need to self-isolate”.

Mass infection is not an optionA letter in the Lancet explains population immunity is unlikely to be achieved without much higher levels of vaccination than can be reasonably expected by 19th July 2021. More than 17 million people have no protection against Covid, particularly we must do more to protect the young.