Stop NHS privatisation until after the election, says shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham
Private companies, including Virgin Care and Care UK, received more than £10bn of public money last year
All new contracts between hospitals and the private sector should be put on hold until after next year’s general election, Labour will argue today.
Andy Burnham, the shadow Health Secretary, will claim the Coalition has no mandate to press ahead with “far-reaching and forced privatisation” of services, including cancer treatment.
Private companies, including Virgin Care and Care UK, received more than £10bn of public money last year.
Labour argues the size of the payments shows the Coalition has put the NHS “up for sale” and claims the number of contracts going out to tender is accelerating ahead of the election.
It points to two 10-year contracts worth a total of £1.2bn for cancer treatment in Staffordshire and an £800m five-year contract for elderly care in Cambridge.
Mr Burnham will accuse David Cameron of reneging on a promise not to privatise more health services and claim the “people not profits” principle of the NHS is under threat.
“On his watch, NHS privatisation is being forced through at pace and scale,” Mr Burnham will say in a speech in Manchester.
“When did the British public ever give their consent for this? It is indefensible for the character of the country’s most valued institution to be changed in this way without the public being given a say.”
Mr Burnham is writing to NHS England to call for the award of dozens of contracts to be deferred unless delay risked patient safety or continuity of services.
An incoming Labour government would order NHS managers to review all health care contracts in the pipeline. They would be instructed to award the contracts to the NHS apart from instances where the public sector could not provide services.
Mr Burnham’s intervention is the latest in a summer campaign by Labour to highlight the choice between the “threat” of a Conservative government and the Labour alternative.
A Tory spokesman said: “This speech is all about politics: it’s not a serious plan for the future of the NHS. Use of the private sector by the NHS doubled in the last four years of Labour, a far bigger increase than under this Government.”
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An opportunity has arisen for a...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity to join...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We have an excellent role for a...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: An IT Support Analyst is required to join the ...