Southport residents urged to tell your GP to stop selling off your NHS hospital
Members of the Southport and Formby CCG (the Clinical Commissioning Group responsible for buying NHS services on behalf of local GPs) are refusing to release information to the public regarding the bidding process currently being undertaken to provide Community Nursing Services in North Sefton.
As the Southport & Formby CCG’s counterpart in West Lancashire currently shares the same NHS provider who has already been excluded from bidding for services in the Ormskirk tender, it is more likely that Southport services will need to change staffing structures and may even go to a private health provider.
As cited in a previous article, under a Freedom of Information application the CCG were asked to provide details of those short-listed to bid for Southport Community Nursing services. They have declined to do so, citing commercial confidentiality as their reason for the decision. 38 Degrees feel the public have a fundamental right to know who has been asked to tender to provide public health services for the NHS.
Paul Bradshaw a spokesperson of Southport’s local 38 Degrees group said “It’s appalling that the CCG can refuse to tell us who has been invited to tender. We appealed the FOI request refusal, now that refusal has now been upheld. It seems the whole tender process is designed to exclude public scrutiny and input.”
“This is being done in so much secret we are now questioning whether local GPs are even aware of the situation as a result we are now calling for local residents to put this question to their own GP.”
38 Degrees group colleague Ray Mutch said “In an age of suspicion surrounding NHS Privatisation and ‘health provision for profit’ it beggars belief that a section of the NHS would seek to conceal its intentions in this manner, it is difficult to overstate, nor, allay fears, the impact that could ensue were our local NHS hospital to lose their role in providing these services to its local community, the results could be devastating and irrecoverable”. “Our concern is we will see more and more health provision from private ‘for profit’ companies and not from the NHS itself.
“We understand that under current arrangements CCGs have a legal obligation to seek private bids for services, however in doing so we point out that it gives a lie to statements by the current government that the NHS is not being and will never be privatised.”
“38 Degrees are a small part of a nationwide movement to uncover the true intentions for our publicly owned NHS as we move into a future where austerity is becoming more and more the norm.”
“Our local group meet weekly to discuss these issues amongst others affecting local services and are calling on local residents to get involved to prevent what it sees as a steady move towards private, profit motivated health provision. To find out more contact Ray Mutch on 0793 027 7240 or contact 38 Degrees directly through our web pages to discover a local group near you.”
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