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    Do we need more democracy in health? The NHS is a massive political football, kicked around by politicians and commentators as if it was one single thing. It is also the site of countless political battle grounds, between medical professionals, officials, managers, companies, charities, patients, the public and representative groups of all these interests in health. There will always be political battles over health, from national arguments over social factors, prevention and funding for services, to local arguments over the quality of care, food and treatment in a particular service. This short presentation raises some questions about making health more […]
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    We have been encouraged to think about the role of campaigning and the influence it has on policy, so here is a personal contribution to start the discussion. When younger I was very active in the Animal Rights movement. I worked within the campaigning organisations, some new, some old, to see where politics of the more traditional sort fitted.  I was, and still am, an advocate of non violent direct action and of the ideas more prominent then of total campaigning – not just marches, demos and articles but picketing premises, consumer boycotts, targeting key people and companies (including shareholder […]
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    Guest Article by J Twunt I welcome the Keogh Review as a vindication of our policies.  It clearly lays the blame for 13,000 needless deaths between 2005 and 2010 (May) on Labour and its policies.  Before 2005 there were no deaths as Labour had yet to set a target for them, but their policy from then of greater competition and more use of private providers was clearly the cause of this suffering. The 3246 needless deaths since 2010 (May) are shown by Keogh to be due entirely to the incompetent local management in these rogue trusts. Poor management can never […]
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    The most fundamental issue raised by the Francis Report on Mid-Staffordshire Hospital is not about institutions or even culture but about voice and power: who is heard, who is silenced and who, tragically, dies from deafness.   Lack of voice was also at the centre of earlier scandals at Alder Hey, the Bristol Royal Infirmary and Winterbourne View Hospital. It will arise again from the many of the inquiries into other scandals emerging from whistle blowers and patients. Democracy is the missing dimension in the health debate. When the founder of the NHS Aneurin Bevan said “The sound of a bedpan […]
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