National commentator Polly Toynbee has used Banbury’s fight for its local hospital services to describe the state of war communities have found themselves in because of slashed public spending.
Toynbee’s article in The Guardian this week talks of NHS managers privately admitting that plans being hatched to make £22 billion of NHS cuts are ‘fairytales’ and accuses Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt of relying on ‘threats and micro-managing’.
Debt-ridden trusts are being put in special measures but Toynbee said ‘he can’t sack them all’.
The journalist used the Horton campaign involvement in last week’s Anti-STP (Sustainability and Transformation Plans) demo in London to describe how towns all over England are rebelling over cuts to essential services while demand is growing.
“NHS need heads skywards, with growing numbers of the old and collapsing social care. (Theresa May) risks a brutal brush with NHS reality before long,” she writes.
“By Friday all 44 NHS areas have to produce a sustainability and transformation plan (STP), unleashing vehement local protest against any mergers or closures.
“Expect every politician, irrespective of party, to dash to join the local ‘Save Our Hospital’ demo. Any who pause to suggest some plans might be good for patients will be mown down in the stampede.” See https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/oct/18/jeremy-hunt-cant-fix-nhs