Although the House of Commons has passed the second reading of the Care Bill, including clause 118 that allows closure of hospitals and hospital departments without proper public consultation, the campaign against the Hospital closure clause is set to gather momentum in the New Year.
Calderdale 38 Degrees is holding a stall in St George’s Square, Hebden Bridge between 10am and 12 noon on Saturday 21st December and you can find out more there. The theme of the stall is opposition to NHS privatisation and to A&E service reductions and closures.
How can an organisation funded by Calderdale Council – and, indirectly, central government – be expected to act as an independent, public watchdog for Calderdale Council public health policies, strategies and actions, and for the NHS purchasing decisions of the new Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group?
If you share these doubts, you might want to get in touch with Calderdale Save Our Services and/or your local Councillor.
Calderdale Council has awarded the £302k 2013-2015 contract for Local HealthWatch to Voluntary Action Calderdale, who bid for it in 2012.
The Coalition government’s Health and Safety Act 2012 requires Councils to fund a Local HealthWatch group. This is supposed to be “the consumer champion within the new NHS and social care arrangements, providing influence, signposting and advocacy for service users”, according to a Calderdale Cabinet Report of 10 December 2012. Continue reading
Calderdale Save Our Services and the Calderdale 38 Degrees group lobbied the January 17th meeting of the ‘shadow’ Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and urged them to do their utmost to keep the NHS as a publicly-provided service.
The new Health and Social Care Act requires that on 1st April 2013 Calderdale CCG will take over Calderdale NHS from Calderdale Primary Care Trust, together with Calderdale Council which will take responsibility for public health. The main role of Calderdale CCG is to commission health services – in other words, to decide who will actually provide services to patients and who will get paid for doing this.
There is a widespread public anxiety that these changes will privatise the NHS by the back door.