|The News Line: Editorial
Saturday, 12 January 2013
DON’T LET THEM CLOSE DOWN OUR HOSPITALS!
THE PLAN to strip Chase Farm Hospital, in Enfield, of its accident and emergency and maternity services is now being implemented with health chiefs earmarking £115million for the operation. There is plenty of cash for cuts!
NHS London announced on Monday that it had approved the business case for the Barnet, Enfield and Haringey ‘Clinical Strategy’ that will see patients sent long distances along busy, congested and often traffic-blocked highways to the already over-crowded North Middlesex University Hospital in Edmonton, or Barnet Hospital in High Barnet.
Only some patients with minor injuries are to be treated at Chase Farm, for just 12 hours a day. The hospital is to be closed, with building work completed in the spring of 2014 and the remnants of Chase Farm merged with the Royal Free in Hampstead.
Units are already being closed at Chase Farm in the rush to present the locality with a fait accompli of a closure, despite the fact that patients needing urgent emergency care could die on the road to Barnet or Edmonton.
Alev Cazimoglu, chairwoman of Enfield Council’s health and wellbeing scrutiny panel, commented: ‘This is the beginning of the end for Chase Farm. An urgent care centre is no replacement for an A&E department.’
However, hospital closure is not an issue just for the people of Enfield.
In London the majority of District General Hospitals face closure, Lewisham, Ealing, Hammersmith, Merton and Ilford being just some of those that are being closed.
However, it is not a London matter either.
All over the country the Coalition is closing down District General Hospitals, in Manchester, Bolton, Liverpool etc, etc. At the same time that the coalition is making these savage cuts, it is also sacking thousands of NHS workers and forcing through pay and pension cuts.
As the NHS gets the knife plunged into by the government and chaos emerges, the Tory cynics turn around to holler that the NHS that they are killing, is failing, that the staff are uncaring, and that ‘failing hospitals’ must be closed and the rest privatised, and ‘uncaring staff’ sacked.
As far as the Tories are concerned, 2013 is to be the year when they drive a stake into the heart of the NHS and, through one of the greatest acts of vandalism in history, return the working class to the conditions of the 1930s, or even the 19th century when the Poor Law and the Workhouse dominated.
News Line urges the working class to defend the NHS NOW!
We warn the trade union leaders that the trade unions must use their power to defend the NHS and their hundreds of thousands of members who work in the NHS, and not look the other way, as they are doing now as they seek to replace the Tory-LibDem coalition with a Labour-LibDem lookalike.
There must be action at once to defend the NHS.
Councils of Action must be formed in every area to unite the trade unions and every section of the community to occupy hospitals to stop them closing.
Occupations must be supported by mass strike actions and a general strike to bring down the Coalition and bring in a workers government to carry out socialist policies.
THERE IS NOT A MOMENT TO WASTE!
OCCUPY NOW to stop the hospital closures.
TAKE GENERAL STRIKE ACTION to bring down the Coalition and bring in a workers government and socialism.
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