4th February 2015

Greenwich Council does “Pointless”: Debating the NHS

As I’ve mentioned before, the ruling Labour clique at Greenwich Council like the sound of their own voices and love to debate things they have no control over.

This tactic could be considered a cunning ruse to avoid scrutiny of the decisions they actually do take if it wasn’t for the fact that these meetings aren’t filmed, the local press rarely turn up and the number of spectators by the end of the evening rarely reaches double figures. They can’t even publish the fact they’ve had them in Greenwich Time these days.

One of January’s motions, signed by Councillors David Gardner (Labour, Woolwich Common) and Danny Thorpe (Labour, Shooters Hill), concerned the NHS:-

This Council applauds the dedication and professionalism of NHS and social care staff serving the citizens of the Royal Borough of Greenwich and notes the award winning Greenwich co-ordinated care pioneer and associated integrated approach which is developing whole person care around the needs of the individual, helping people to keep well or better manage long term conditions and reducing the pressure on acute services.

However, council is concerned about the impact of the 2012 Health and Social Care Act and the £3 billion spent on top-down reorganisation which has fragmented the NHS while prioritising competition over collaboration. We note with alarm the continued challenges with increased A&E waiting times, the removal of the 48 hour appointments standard to see a GP and increased waiting times for many operations and for cancer treatments.

Council welcomes the NHS (Amended Duties and Powers) Bill introduced to Parliament by Clive Efford MP (Eltham) giving the Secretary of State a duty to promote an NHS based on social solidarity and repealing s75 which enforces open competition for NHS services.

Council calls for the repeal of the 2012 Act and the replacement of the ethos of competition and fragmentation, with one of collaboration supported by the planning and resources for a successful, comprehensive and sustainable NHS and social care system supporting the health and wellbeing of all citizens.

The video begins just as Gardner finishes proposing the motion. It would have started earlier but I’d just set up again after being asked to stop filming for the first time that evening. Beware – it’s rather long.

Stewart Christie

Recovering cult escapee. Tread carefully.

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