Another CCG is recommending more hospital closures in their areas.
Our NHS is in crisis with chronic overcrowding in many hospitals and reports of A&E facilities in many areas of the verge of collapse. It may therefore come as something of a surprise to learn that yet another CCG is recommending more hospital closures in their areas. This time the South Devon and Torbay Clinical Commissioning Group is proposing that Ashburton, Bovey Tracey, Dartmouth and Paignton hospital be shut and the sites sold off "for development". This is not however a unique situation in our NHS where hospitals, beds, Doctors surgeries and other health facilities around the country are being systematically closed and sold off by a government hell bent on dismantling the NHS in preparation for the private companies, not least of all Richard Branson's "Virgin Care", hovering like vultures ready to swoop in and pick over the carcass.
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As in all the other cases, the South Devon and Torbay CCG justification for the closure's is encased in the usual clichés of "improving services" and controlling costs. A statement from the CCG states,
"In making these recommendations, the Governing Body is being advised that the proposals will deliver the changes needed to improve services and to support more people effectively in a way that is both sustainable and affordable."
Empty rhetoric which seeks to conceal the real motives and which nobody now believes.
Since 1948, the Conservative party and conservative governments during that period, have been covertly hostile to the NHS and have employed numerous tactics to undermine and discredit both the institution and those working within it. The current stratagem is to deprive the NHS of adequate funding, close hospitals and facilities, create a crisis within the hospitals and in the care system generally then argue that the health service and care provisions should be sold off to private companies in order to save money and improve services. It is a crisis that the conservatives have themselves created.
The natural result of this process is the creation of a two tier Health Service where those who are able to pay the premium prices will receive care in the private sector while the others will be reliant on a very basic provision or even charities for their health needs.
It is this prospect which we must resist and challenge all over the country. The NHS is too valuable a service to be left to the vagaries of private companies and the political dogma of Conservative Central Office.