TO CELEBRATE the 73rd birthday of the NHS, campaigning organisation ‘Keep Our NHS Public’ (KONP) had a COVID- safe stall at the top of Bridge Street on Saturday (July 3).
Leaflets were distributed to highlight safety for patients and protection for staff. KONP member Stan Emmett also insisted on the importance of pay justice.
He said: “We want to emphasise the need for fair rewards for all NHS staff, and substantially more than the one per cent pay offer for nurses.
“It is important to invest properly in training too, including restarting bursaries for nurses, which are essential for recruitment and retention.”
Dr Sylvia Chandler, also a member of KONP, said that the Government’s plans to legalise the position of the new Integrated Care Systems, which would take the place of Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in the upcoming NHS Bill, would increase the influence of private corporations.
She claimed this could include US companies like Centene, who would be involved in commissioning and funding healthcare, giving them access to decision making within NHS boards.
“They are more likely to be interested in the opportunities for profit and the potential use of patient data than the provision of patient services,” she said.
There was a good response and interest from the public. One lady even revealed to campaigners Aneurin Bevan, the NHS’s founder, figured as part of her family tree in Tredegar.
KONP would particularly like to thank Evesham Labour Party and the Green Party for their very significant support on Saturday.
Further details of the KONP campaign can be found by visiting www.keepournhspublic.com