Trade Unions representing half a million NHS workers have warned that a “surge in privatisation” of the health service risks creating a system based on ability to pay, rather than need.

In a strongly worded statement, leaders of the major health unions representing staff across the NHS said the growing involvement of private companies threatened one of its core functions: the provision of free treatment based on need.

“There is a real danger that if we continue down this road we could end up with a repeat of the American experience where income, rather than need, dictates the level of care a patient can expect,” said the nine leaders of NHS staff, including midwives, nurses and radiographers.

The warning comes as updated figures show the scale of private-sector involvement in the health service since the government’s unpopular shakeup of the English NHS under the Health and Social Care Act 2012…read more

The Guardian: 8 February 2016

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