Please use the updated version for the 12 May 2017 House of Commons debate on the NHS Bill, which you can find here
NHS Bill Letter or email to your MP
Please ask your MP to vote for the cross-party NHS Bill in the House of Commons on 11 March. Here is a letter for you to send or modify as you see fit, for your own MP. You can find your MP’s contact details here. If you can, send a letter by post, rather than an email. That way, they have to reply to you.
Dear Calderdale, Kirklees, Dewsbury and Barnsley people are fighting to keep both Halifax and Huddersfield A&Es open. The threatened closure of Huddersfield A&E – due to go to a meaningless public consultation on 15 March – is part of a wave of hospital service cuts that are damaging patient care and NHS staff wellbeing. Already Dewsbury District Hospital has lost many beds and services, and its A&E is due to be downgraded to an urgent care centre in September, while Pinderfields is already overcrowded with many ambulance diverts from its A&E and 568 handover times of 60 minutes or more between December 2014 and December 2015. To help protect the NHS from the pressures that are behind the proposed destruction of the Huddersfield Royal Infirmary District General Hospital and its A&E (and related hospital service cuts), please vote for the cross-party NHS Bill at its second reading on 11 March. It is vital that there are enough MPs present in the House of Commons to debate the Bill. so please make sure to attend. The Bill’s principle of restoring the NHS as a publicly funded, owned and run service is supported by 84% of the public, as shown by a 2013 YouGov survey. This would save at least £4.5bn/year. This is a conservative estimate of the amount of NHS money that’s currently wasted on tendering and contracting NHS services, and on contract monitoring & management. Stopping and reversing NHS marketisation and privatisation would mean this money would go back into patient care. The amount is enough to fill the projected £22bn NHS funding shortfall by 2020/1. This projected shortage of money is what’s driving the cuts to our hospital services – including Huddersfield A&E. In its mission to cut costs, NHS England is importing “new care models” and working practices based on those used by the American health care company, United Health – the previous employer of NHS England’s Chief Executive. These “care models” are designed to reduce patient care and increase corporate profit. Clinical Commissioning Groups have rushed to commission them through huge privatised community care contracts – even though the Coalition government told Clinical Commissioning Groups they don’t have to buy NHS services through a process of competitive tendering that invites bids from private health companies. But now, in a dangerous precedent, Virgin Care has just successfully sued Hull Clinical Commissioning Group for not allowing private companies to bid for contracts for 8 GP practices, forcing it to put them out to competitive tender. The Bill would solve these problems by restoring the duty of the Secretary of State to provide a universal, comprehensive health care service, which was removed by the Health & Social Care Act 2012. For all these reasons, we need the NHS Bill to become law. Please vote for it on 11 March. It is the second Bill on the list of Private Members’ Bills for consideration, so should be read fairly soon after 9.30am, which is when the first private members’ Bill is to be read.
Update 10 March It turns out that the Labour Shadow Chancellor has told Labour MPs not to vote for the NHS Bill and has sent them an email to send to constituents explaining why they won’t be voting for it.