Thursday, February 14, 2008

Virgin Births and Private Polys

Green Party health spokesperson Stuart Jeffery will launch the Green Party response to the NHS reports by Lord Darzi this Friday (15th February) at Green Party Spring Conference in Reading, warning that the increased provision for private companies in the NHS will spell only fragmentation and centralisation for the health service.

The two reports by Darzi over the last 6 months sets out the agenda for future of health care in London and the rest of England. The reports attempt to address accountability, access, public health and safety in the NHS. They key recommendations set out by Lord Darzi promotes the increased capacity of private providers in the NHS and calls for a creation of polyclinics to replace local GP clinics.

Entitled 'Virgin Births and Private Polys', the Green Party response will criticise the report on several keys aspects:

1) The support of private providers, creating an 'inflexible, unaccountable and expensive' NHS.

2) Strengthening the 'marketisation' of healthcare through the 'choice' agenda.

3) Encouraging fragmentation of healthcare through private providers.

4) Centralising GP surgeries into polyclinics and the centralisation of hospital services

5) Backing the corporate health care providers to take over GP surgeries, end of life care, secondary care and other services.

6) Failing to understand the wider connection between society and health, promoting a medicalised approach to health promotion rather than addressing the real issues.

Commenting on the Darzi report, Green health spokesperson and author of 'Virgin Births and Private Polys' Stuart Jeffery, said

"Darzi's reports are more of the same privatisation, privatisation, privatisation agenda from New Labour. It is fragmenting health care and costing taxpayers millions, and must stop. Darzi's reports are lackluster, and fail to understand many key issues affecting the people's health and also what people want from their NHS.

"Darzi thinks he can fix health problems by some old style health promotion, whereas Greens are aware that society, poverty and the environment are the major determinants of health. Darzi thinks that people want distant specialist hospitals to choose from whereas we know that people want, and need, good local services that they can trust.

"The proposal to introduce polyclinics to replace GP surgeries is appalling. Polyclinics should be introduced as an additional layer of care, rather than as a centralisation of services. Darzi also mercilessly promotes private providers, who have been shown to fragment care, be expensive, and remain unaccountable.

"Richard Branson has now entered the health care market, with the opportunity to run public services such as GP surgeries and maternity units. It is only a matter of time before we end up with expensive Virgin Births."


Notes for editors:

Launch of 'Virgin Births and Private Polys' will be on Friday 15th February, at 18.00 at Green Party Reading Town Hall.

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