The full details of the dates and times of the meetings for the NHS consultation in Cornwall have been published on the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly NHS website, which can be viewed here. In an attempt to limit opposition, the times for the meetings are generally in the mornings and early afternoons – with most meetings taking place this month and early in March, not particularly great warning.
The plans are to scrap all the Primary Care Trusts in Cornwall and turn them into ‘social enterprises’, essentially not-for-profit businesses. The move will divide the NHS and essentially take staff out of government pay conditions – allowing for unscrupulous providers to attack the living standards of NHS workers at whim. As well as these plans, GPs will be given control of 80% of the health budget. Sounds like a good thing, no? Except for the fact that GPs are not accountants, they treat patients. Most work extremely long hours and will not have time to fill in extra paperwork or choose which drugs to buy – meaning this control will be put into the hands of private companies.
The consultation site claims that ‘it is supported by GPs and will help to drive integration of health and social care for the benefit of patients’. This has been fundamentally proven wrong. A survey by the Royal College of General Practitioners showed that more than half of GPs oppose the plans.
If you are free on these dates and live nearby, Cornwall Anti-Cuts Alliance is urging as many to go as possible and show that most people oppose these plans which will damage the NHS and reduce quality.
Please let as many people know about this consultation as possible. They are trying to make it go under the radar – but the Big Society will fight back.