York GPs set to profit from NHS privatisation
6:06pm 5th October 2011
(Updated 6:08pm 5th October 2011)
Serious concerns about the accelerating stealth privatisation of the NHS, and the veracity of David Cameron's pledge that the NHS is safe in his hands ,have been raised by Unite, the largest union in the country.
The latest example of the growing privatisation trend is the York-based Haxby Group Practice of GPs which is touting the services of HGB Ltd, owned by the practice.
Patients have now been written to by the practice offering such services as procedures to deal with in-growing toenails at £146.95 and simple viral warts at £156.40. This new 'Private Minor Operation Service' is based at the New Earswick Surgery, New Earswick, York YO32 4AG.
Unite's national officer for health, Rachael Maskell said:
"Even before the government's vehicle to privatise the NHS - the Health and Social Care Bill - has been approved by Parliament, the insidious stealth privatisation is gathering pace.
"The latest example is the touting of services by the Haxby GPs through a private company they own - HGB Ltd - for services that until very recently were provided by the NHS. The GPs are set to profit from what is the privatisation of the NHS.
"Serious question have to be asked about the use of data collected for NHS purposes now being used for energetic marketing. Is patient confidentiality, the bedrock of trust in the NHS, being compromised in the interests of private profit?
"The impression that is being given is that these services, such as skin tags, are no longer available on the NHS. This may be a sad fact of life for this practice, but there are other areas of the country where these procedures are available on the NHS.
"Why should a pensioner have to pay for an in-growing toenail in York, but in Oxfordshire - David Cameron's home turf - it could be on the NHS?
"More widely, David Cameron's rhetoric that the NHS is safe in his government's hand is increasingly being revealed as a sham - hollow and threadbare. Now is the time for the House of Lords to flex their collective political muscle and reflect the nation's will and reject the privatisation of the NHS, once-and-for all."
So the move has raised concerns about back-door privatisation.
But Doctor John McEvoy from the Haxby Health Centre have told Minster FM they will not be profiting by performing the procedure:
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