Hands off Hinchingbrooke (HoH) members will join a national demonstration in London on Saturday to protest against what they have described as a “seal of secrecy” about possible cuts and privatisation in the NHS.
Campaigners have concerns about the merger between Hinchinbroooke Hospital and the Peterborough & Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which will take place on April 1, and fear that wider plans to transform the healthcare system in Cambridgeshire will be detrimental to patients.
Campaigner Jane Howell said: “Hinchingbrooke will be taken over despite the best efforts of many of many Huntingdonshire people and also Huntingdonshire District Council. The decision to acquire Hinchingbrooke was made by NHS England as part of their new secret system of healthcare sustainability transformation plans which limits opposition from the medical profession and the public. Too many decisions are being made behind closed doors.”
The #Our NHS march, which is likely to attract a lot of NHS staff who are concerned about cuts to services and “back-door privatisation”, starts at Tavistock Square in London at midday and campaigners will march to Parliament.
Stephen Graves, chief executive designate of the new North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust: “The boards of both trusts made the decision to agree the full business case to combine our organisations following robust scrutiny at board level. They also sought feedback on the integration of clinical services from the independent East of England Clinical Senate, and from members of the public and staff following a full programme of public engagement from July to November 2016.
“This feedback enriched the full business case to ensure we have as robust a plan as possible.
“Our business case is clear that a single, merged organisation would operate from the three current hospital sites. There are no plans to change the provision of services from current arrangements, our focus remains to jointly deliver care that’s better, safer and local.”
INFO: See this You Tube video clip about the demonstration: o35ZgGU42mU.