Unprecedented NHS Cuts Roust Thousands to March in Protest
Thousands of people in London have taken their protest to the streets after the dramatic NHS cuts proposed by the government. The event is considered as one of the largest NHS rallies in history fueled by the £20bn worth of cuts scheduled by 2020.
Independent UK reports that tens of thousands of people are holding a national demonstration to call to arms against the cuts to implemented in the NHS. The crowd, rumored to be 250,000 in attendance are composed of campaigners, students, union representatives, and medics marched from the Tavistock Square to the Parliament Square in Westminster.
Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn addressed the crowd. According to Corbyn, "Our NHS is not in crisis because of overspending, it's in crisis because of underfunding, a crisis made down there in Downing Street". Protestors are also rallying against what they believed as a possible £26 billion cut in health and social care due to political decisions.
Meanwhile, reports from the BBC reveals that the Department of Health has already said that it will be investing an extra £4bn in the NHS. However, protest leaders still called out to the government to provide more funds for the health service and NHS hospitals instead of cutting back costs.
Even the government's Sustainability Transformation Plans (STP's) are being questioned by the rally. According to them, this is just a move to smokescreen further cuts to be implemented in the NHS and one of the instruments used towards the privatization of NHS hospitals.
Other proposals from the government involve complete closure of some hospitals and centralizing services such as A&E and stroke care on fewer sites. Protestors also reveal that although budgets are increasing, NHS hospitals are failing to keep up with the demands of the public.
Around two-thirds of services in England will be cut back with the implementation of the NHS cuts, possible privatization, and closure of NHS hospitals. The uproar hopes to act as a wake-up call for the Government to plot a different course for the NHS.