NHA co-leader Dr Clive Peedell's response to David Cameron's conference speech:
"David Cameron, you're no champion of the NHS.
Just saying you will "protect the NHS budget and continue to invest more" is meaningless. Even a real-terms increase in funding isn't enough to keep up with 'health inflation' currently around 3-4% due to the costs of an ageing population, news drugs and lifestyle factors. Ring-fencing an inadequate sum is no solution to anything. Failing to properly address the £30bn NHS funding gap by 2020 will result in more hospital closures, more staff cuts, more service failures, further rationing of care, and ultimately charging and co-payment.
If the Tories are re-elected then we can wave goodbye to an NHS that is free at the point of use. The austerity and pro-market policies of the Tories are a toxic mixture that will be fatal to the NHS.
David Cameron wants us to trust him with our NHS.
Why should we trust the man who falsely said he had increased NHS spending but was exposed by the Office of National Statistics.
Why should we trust the man who said 'no top down reorganisation' and then launched one so big it could be "seen from outer space" and so expensive that it consumed £3bn of NHS money.
Why trust the man who has forced the NHS to make £20bn of cuts which have created an A&E crisis, a GP meltdown and a waiting list explosion.
Why trust the man who has driven midwives to take strike action for the first time in their 133 year history.
Why trust the man who denies he's privatising the NHS yet is tendering out billions of pounds of NHS contracts to the private sector.
Why trust the man who squanders billions on bureaucracy to create a health system that puts profits before patients.
Why trust the man who hasn't even been able to tell us how much money he’s promising or where the money’s coming from."
Notes to editors
References for statements:
Top down reorganisation - http://rcnpublishing.com/doi/full/10.7748/ns.188.8.131.5247990
Privatisation of NHS - http://www.nhsforsale.info/privatisation-list/contract-alert/contract-alert-report-april-april.html and http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/jul/22/hospital-trusts-overspend-budgets-bailouts?CMP=twt_gu
Billions wasted on running the NHS market – http://chpi.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/At-what-cost-paying-the-price-for-the-market-in-the-English-NHS-by-Calum-Paton.pdf