Monday, February 14, 2011

False Economy - Why Cuts are the Wrong Cure

The wrong cure - an apt phrase for the cuts being imposed on the UK National Health Service.

As Kezia was diagnosed with leukaemia at Rochdale's general infirmary and received her treatment at the Royal Manchester Children's Hospital for three long years, I here present some of the cuts in the northwest of England as presented by False Economy. These are pretty typical throughout the country.


"On 20th August 2010, University Hospital of South Manchester (UHSM) NHS Foundation Trust has issued notification for possible redundancies for the equivalent of 27.6 full-time clerical posts and 11 managerial posts.

UHSM is a major acute teaching hospital trust providing services for adults and children at Wythenshawe Hospital and Withington Community Hospital."


"Royal Bolton Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is set to cut the equivalent of 257 full-time staff posts between 2010 and 2013.

The Trust is cutting 70 posts through natural turnover during 2010/11, which is just over two percent of total staffing. The expected breakdown of this reduction is as follows:

Management - 1 FTE (full-time equivalent staff)
Nursing and midwifery - 48 FTE
Admin and clerical - 15 FTE
Associated health professions - 3 FTE
Ancillary staff - 3 FTE

The Trust expects to cut a further 92 posts during 2011/12 and 95 in 2012/13, although both these figures reflect overall savings as applied to pay budgets, and could reduce if extra non-pay savings are found, as they were in 2010/11.

The Trust offers a wide range of services based at the Royal Bolton Hospital in Farnworth, as well as some in community settings."


"Trafford Healthcare NHS Trust expects to cut the equivalent of 50-70 non-clinical full-time posts through natural wastage following changes to services.

The Trust provides services at Trafford General and Stretford Memorial Hospitals in Manchester, Altrincham General Hospital, and in the community."


"From 11th October 2010, Burnley General Hospital’s casualty department is no longer being staffed by a specialist Accident & Emergency doctor between 2am and 8am each night.

Instead, the department - known as the Urgent Care Centre - is being run by nurses with access to an on-site family doctor, who local trade union officials say has not worked in an A&E environment for 15 years.

Previously, the department was staffed by nurses with support from a registrar who would normally have around five years’ experience of working in an A&E department.

A recent independent review recommended the Urgent Care Centre be upgraded."


"University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust plans to cut staffing levels by the equivalent of 705 full-time posts between 2010 and 2015 - a 16.25 percent cut in total staffing levels.

Around 60 percent of the reduction will fall in clinical posts.

The Trust provides services from five hospitals - Furness General Hospital, Royal Lancaster Infirmary, Westmorland General Hospital, Queen Victoria Hospital, and Ulverston Community Health Centre."

And so on and so on and so on ...

The cuts had already begun under Blair and Brown´s Labour governments. The new UK government, under Conservative Cameron and Liberal Clegg, are continuing with the same policies. So following on from cuts in maternity and A & E services in Rochdale under the former, further cuts will continue under the latter.

Drs Rant and Crippen, so critical of Labour's NHS policies must be content with the cuts in NHS management and even the reduction in "nurse specialists". I would like to read their reactions to the end of PCTs etc and the extra work load put on them through "GP commissioning".

So much for the NHS ...

Let us move on.

When I was last in Rochdale, Woolworths was closing its nortwest regional depot, the town's largest employer. as well as many of its stores (including the one in Rochdale).


"Rochdale Law Centre, a charity law centre serving Rochdale—one of the most deprived areas of the country—has already had its immigration and asylum funding cut by 75%. Further cuts from the public sector threaten to decimate the remaining services, including community care, employment, housing, and discrimination. This means that the most vulnerable and marginalised people in our community won’t have access to justice when their rights are threatened."

This is the one I like most ...


"Manchester City Council plans to close all its public toilets except those on Mount Street, which will be subject to a small charge."

I told my boss and he delighted me with his "let them eat cake" solution - "let them piss in the street"!

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