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For further information contact James Beecher 07734 058789
Campaigners' anger as another local NHS service privatised
Campaign group Stroud Against the Cuts has reacted angrily to news that Gloucestershire's Out of Hours primary care services are to be handed to private company Care UK (1).
James Beecher said: "We're angry that yet another local NHS service is set to be privatised. We've already seen terrible results when non-emergency ambulances were handed to Arriva (2), and now Out of Hours care is to be taken over by a company that was found to be discharging patients before they had been treated - with a 2015 ITV probe finding they put patients at “huge risk” (3). The company is well known for cutting care workers wages by up to 35% in Doncaster - prompting 90 days of strike action (4). The ongoing privatisation and underfunding of our NHS is exactly why we've organised a coach to take people to the National NHS demonstration on Saturday 4th March (5) - and are holding an exhibition about the damage being done by the government and how we can defend our health services from this Saturday 4th till Saturday 11th February, in the former Millets shop on Stroud High St (6)."
Notes for editors:
1. "CCG announce preferred bidder for the primary care Out of Hours service", Healthwatch Gloucestershire, 1st February 2017
2. E.g. "24 hours into new Gloucestershire ambulance service and patients had to wait hours for a lift", Gloucestershire Live, December 6th 2013
3. "Private NHS contractor 'boots out patients before finishing treatment to meet targets'", The Mirror, July 22nd 2015
4. "Care UK workers celebrate pay offer to end 90 days of strikes", The Guardian, November 8th 2014
5. National Demonstration - Coach from Stroud, details from Stroud Against the Cuts website
6. NHS Exhibition, details from Stroud Against the Cuts website