KONP, STPs & Devo & Protests 

Join us tomorrow at this last KONP meeting before the school holidays. So much has been happening over the last few weeks on the political front that it is difficult to keep up but our new Tory foe  looks much like the other one, Jeremy Hunt has kept his boots on, the NHS continues to be decimated of funds and the latest instaprint  re-organisation of the NHS into 44 “footprints” ploughs on at great speed  driven by NHS Englands’s direction to cut hospital beds and services. 

At Keep OUR NHS PUBLIC’s national AGM/ Conference on Saturday John Lister put his finger on one of the dodges for minimising resistance when closing hospitals closing hospitals- run them down, create a recruitment crisis because staff don’t want posts in hospitals which are nose diving then look like patient champions when you say the hospital has to close because of issues re patient safety.

Come and join us for lively discussion about what is happening to our NHS,  help us plan  a “Health Campaigns  Together”  Conference in Leeds on Saturday 15th October,  unmask what is really behind the Sustainability and Transformation Plans  and hit the ground running in the autumn..

Just some events coming up round the country:


Sept. 17th  National Conference on S and TPs

Sat 24th Sept. Manchester Conference on Devolution and how this is tied in with STPs

And possible GIG UP OUR NHS in Millennium Square, Leeds  from 2pm

Sunday 2nd October Tory Party Conference Protest in Birmingham

For Leeds Keep Our NHS Public

NB For some pics of our contribution to the Anti Trident Protest in Leeds yesterday, see Leeds  KONP facebook


Minutes from last meeting



Junior docs contract dispute

Junior docs due to ballot on the latest offer at the end of June – result 6th July BMA organising road shows early June. There’s already much dissatisfaction re the significant shortfalls in the offer but not sure whether there is sufficient appetite for escalating action. At least one court case is ongoing and the outcome of the challenge re inequality for women might have an impact. Christine noted that GPs and Consultants are hard on the heels of the junior docs in autumn re their contracts.

Sustainability and Transformation 5 year plans to reconfigure services and cut the deficit

All new footprints ( ours West Yorks) have to submit their plans to NHS England by 30th June. Consultation has been virtually non existent. Simon Stevens has asked the Footprints to leave consultation until after they have received and examined the plans ie expect consultation after the fact and in August !! Please sign the petition insisting on consultation re STPs and raise questions at all the CCG meetings


STP Questions asked at Leeds North CCG

Concerns re Sustainability and Transformation Plans – for Leeds North CCG 5.16

1 That CCGs are being forced to try to make unrealistic cost savings by a Government that has driven down the % of GDP we send on health to near the bottom in Europe – just over 8% while France Germany and the Netherlands are all near 11%. The CCG shouldn’t be colluding with the devastation of our health service. and acting as puppets on a string.

2. It is clear that the footprints are a desperate attempt to create a fast route to closing A and Es and hospital beds. This is a heavy handed top down taking of control by a Govt. who said in 2011/12 that it was introducing the Health and Social Care Act to disperse power over planning to local GPs. Now they are panicking about a 2.5 bn deficit we are back to top down control with menace ! The S&TPs feel a bit like Stalin or Mao’s 5 year plans!

3. The plans have not been tried and tested over time. Not only is there concern re the lack of independent evaluation of the recent Vanguards , what evidence there is suggests that improvements in community care ( and these are likely to be pretty limited in the current financial situation ) don’t necessarily have a huge impact on the need for hospital care and what impact there might be will manifest over time, not magic right by 2020.

4. Health bodies smarting at the Hobsons choice they / you have been given will say that at least we will get extra money if we do what we have been told. However Chris Ham from the Kings Fund suggests the most of the front loading of the £8bn promised will be swallowed up paying off deficits not creating new services and the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy ( Cipfa) , not noted for being left wing, suggests that the shortfall in NHS spending is likely to grow by £10bn by 2020 and the 5 year forward view on which these STPs are meant to be based has already floundered.

5. One of the positive aspects of the footprints which is closer working together between Health and Social care should flash red warning lights as Social Care has been seriously degraded and largely privatised with LA budgets almost halved so the NHS is not integrating up , it is integrating down and will find itself neatly aligned with a service that already has means testing and charging at its heart. Just in the last few weeks there has been a lot of talk on the radio and in the press re charging and rationing as the Govt try to convince people we can’t a afford a decent, public health care system.

6. Care in the Community without proper funding is likely to put more pressure on families looking after their own with little help, which is most likely to mean increased burdens on women who probably form the biggest army of carers .This is quite apart from Agenda for Change pushing tasks down the chain and hoping for a barefoot army of volunteers to provide Custer’s last stand.

7. And how much do the public know about these changes or longer term vision for the CCGs to morph into Accountable Care Organisations like the Health Maintenance Organisations in the USA. Nothing I would suggest .


As I feel that the best hope for the NHS and quality patient care is that the public do understand what is happening, don’t like it and demand a change in the Government and society’s priorities to put health care pretty much top of the agenda, along with food in bellies and roofs over heads, I would like to know

  1. What the CCG is going to do about informing the public and seeing them as allies and not potential irritants to be kept quiet and


  1. What if anything this CCG is doing with other bodies like the H and WB Boards to tell it as it is and contest directives from NHS England and the Dept. of health, insisting on appropriate funding for the NHS before the NHs as we know it becomes little more than a rump service for the poor and most vulnerable. Some of the Hospital Trusts are now speaking out. Where are the CCGs?

Bootham Park and mental health services in York.

We went to the march in York on 12th June which had about 150 users and supporters of the mental health service. People are still being sent to Teesside for treatment and a large number of different sites are being explored for a new hospital unit.

We noted that we should give mental health a higher profile in our campaigning in Leeds.

Planned protest / stall outside Boots on Commercial St. Sat 4th June 2 – 3.30

John Puntis has put together an excellent piece on Boots drawing from the Guardian articles and sent it round staff at LTHT.

4th June is also the day for the Bursary or Bust demo in London so we will be collecting signatures supporting the nurses and other health workers who face loss of their bursaries

KONP at Triathalon Sunday 12th June

Agreed we aim for late morning on Sunday 12th ( poss 11-12. 30ish outside Brotherton Wing entrance of LGI when Millennium Square should be particularly busy

Public meeting with John Lister Wed 22nd June 7-9pm

Steady response to the facebook event invite. York Defend our NHS have said that some people from the mental health/ Bootham Park demo on 13th June have shown interest.

NHS Birthday

Tuesday 5th July

We have suggested to KONP that we try to highlight privatisation through protests outside private providers as well as doing any flag/ flower day / celebratory activities that week. Discussed a few possible targets for 4/4.30 – 6pm event on 5th . This likely to be discussed at KONP national Steering Group on Sat 11th June

There are now NO NHS dentists in Dewsbury !!

Possible Health Campaigns Together Conference in the autumn

Agreed we should offer a conference in Leeds. Adrian O’Malley’s mid Yorks Unison branch have offered to donate around £200 towards a venue. We though October good, avoiding school hols.

Next Leeds KONP Meeting Wednesday 8th June 6.30pm in O’Neill’s

Join us for the Battle for the NHS – the People vs the Government, Leeds 22nd June

John Lister, founder member and national secretary of Keep Our NHS Public will give a round up of the attacks on the NHS- from Devolution and local cuts- to TTIP and privatisation. We will be focusing on what we can do locally to stop these attacks and save the NHS- free at the point of need.

WHEN 22nd June 19.00 – 21.00pm

WHERE Cosmopolitan Hotel, 2 Lower Briggate, LS1 4AE Leeds

Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/605453116284816/

Calderdale NHS campaign – key dates in April

From our Calderdale colleagues, if you or any relatives / friends affected, please pass on these dates.

1.  Tuesday 5th April CCG Consultation drop-in in Hebden Bridge Town Hall 2-8pm.  We need people to monitor the quality of the event and to hand out our list of questions outside.
2.  Tuesday 5th April Calderdale AHSC Scrutiny Panel meeting Hx town hall 6pm. This will be discussing Todmorden Health Centre Vanguard and Urgent Care Scheme, also Closure of Art Therapy service, and Mental Health in Calderdale.
3. Wednesday 6th April Joint Health Scrutiny Panel meeting. 3.30pm Halifax Town Hall. They will be looking at Planned Care, Maternity and Paediatrics.
4. Thursday 14th April Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group Meeting 2pm at the Shay.  Agenda is not out yet.
5. Thursday 14th April. Consultation Public Meeting 6-8pm Halifax Leisure Centre.
6.  Tuesday 19th April  Joint Health Scrutiny Panel meeting 3.30 Halifax Town Hall. Looking at Transport Travel and Parking, Patient Flows, YAS, Estates, and Clinical Senate.
7.  Wednesday 20th April CCG Consultation drop in Todmorden Central Methodist Church.      2-8pm. We need people to hand out leaflets and monitor the consultation.
8. Thursday 21st April Calderdale 38 degrees meeting 6.30 at The Three Pigeons pub in Halifax.

Leeds Community and Mental Health Services across West Yorkshire

In Leeds ‘there is a need’ to collectively deliver £800m of savings across health and social care over the next five years based on poorly designed policies from the recent governments at national level and unrealistic levels of investment in the NHS to make way for the private sector which has always been Simon Stevens’ preferred option since his early roles in health policy for the Blair government, his role at United Health (including his interest in Optum – the United Health subsidiary in the UK taking over large framework agreements for services) and his role at NHS England. Don’t believe us? Read on !

Leeds, as part of West Yorkshire, had been successful in becoming an ‘Urgent Care Vanguard’ site the city as a health and social care economy was unsuccessful in its bid to be a ‘Multi-speciality Community Provider (MCP) Vanguard’ site. Despite this there is an expectation from NHS England that the development of new models of care should not wait for the results of Vanguard prototypes and that all parts of England are now expected to develop new models of care at pace, or have a model imposed on them in the not too distant future. In summary let’s not wait for evidence of whether anything from these expensive restructuring experiments works or not !

The joint LYPFT & LCH tender for prison services had scored better than the preferred provider across all elements of quality, however, they were beaten on price by Care UK, who have been awarded the contract of £370,000 with effect from the 1 April 2016 and that 9 Trust staff will be transferred across to the new service provider. There is continued activity looking at appeals within the council and NHS Trusts. The news this week about £165k paid to  private sector provider for 2 home visits during a year in the West Midlands continues to highlight not just the disastrous inefficiencies of privately delivered care but service users left with poor care and the NHS is expected to pick up the more complex pieces.

Care UK as a private provider will cherry pick the community services as warned by NHS campaigners over a number of years. There is more work to be done with commissioners in Leeds to highlight the dangers of privately delivered expensive, fragmented care that results from less skilled staff delivering less skilled care,  impossible large scale purchasing efficiencies and worse health outcomes overall for patients and service users.

The recruitment crisis brought on by these ill-thought out decisions nationally continues to result in services being closed unnecessarily. Service users are reporting less consultation and involvement with own care over the last five years.

If you want to have a say, join us on the march on 16th in Leeds and/or help campaigners across Yorkshire work together to restore a publicly funded, accountable and delivered NHS. You may know someone who works in health, social or council services and wants to see people get the best care from staff who are happy, trained well and able to deliver it well, we can use all help! Care is not just for a privileged tax avoiding few but for everyone.


Leeds KONP news and events – January

Leeds KONP supported junior doctors across Leeds and will continue to do so with any future industrial action. We had good presence at LGI with substantial help from excellent Leeds Hospital Alert members. Others supported Jimmys and Pinderfields. Leeds KONP will continue to support action against any other threats to healthcare staff including nurses, student nurses & AHPs, GPs.


  • 2-4pm, NHS campaigns Yorkshire regional meeting – Unison regional office, Leeds
  • 5.30-7pm practice session for our flashmob choir, Quaker Meeting House, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds


  • 1pm Huddersfield & Calderdale A&E demo, St George’s Square, Huddersfield
  • 2-3.30pm stall outside Boots, Commercial St


  • 2pm, NHS Leeds West CCG Public Governing Body meeting, Fulneck Room at Pudsey Civic Hall, Dawson’s Corner, Pudsey, LS28 5TA
  • 7pm Huddersfield & Calderdale A&E, Methodist Mission, Lords St, Huddersfield

29th – 10.30am Calderdale & Kirklees Joint Scrutiny committee meeting Huddersfield, Council chamber, town hall

30th – Health Campaigns Together national meeting, London – 4 x Leeds KONP attending


5th – closing date for contributions to Leeds Health & Wellbeing strategy

1oth –  6.30pm Leeds KONP meeting, O’Neills, Great George St behind Town Hall, Leeds

12th – 7.30pm Privatisation – this is the big one – Priory Street Centre, York, YO1 6ET,  Speakers:

  • Dr. Clive Peedell Specialising in clinical oncology. Co-leader & co-founder of the National Health Action Party
  • Prof. David Hunter Professor of Health Policy and Management at Durham University
  • Rachael Maskell MP. Labour MP for York Central, speaking out for the National Health Service

24th –  6.30pm Leeds KONP meeting, O’Neills, Great George St behind Town Hall, Leeds

NHS Leeds news

Public sector cuts.These  were put before LCC Exec last week.

Future cuts to public health spending report

Yorks Commissioning Support Unit bid has been won by a private consortium calling themselves eMBED comprising Kier, who have done health care development projects, Dr. Foster, who provide variation analysis and benchmarking solutions , BDo who do service redesign and Engine who do communications. The official spiel says that the Consortium will provide Business intelligence, IT services , corporate governance, and public/ patient engagement support., HR, procurement and service redesign to the 23 Clinical Commissioning Units in our region. They take over in March 16.

LGI redevelopment plans. The plan is to create more and better facilities on LGI site but sell off parts of the listed building and some other space to help fund it.

NHS national news

Government ignored and buried minimum safe staffing guidelines – non HSJ subscribers can also view full details

NHS Commission – on 6th Jan Lib Dem Norman Lamb asked Parliament for leave to bring in a Bill to establish a Cross Party Commission to examine the future of the NHS and Social Care system. The Bill is backed by a number of Lib Dems, Tory Philip Lee who has hard right view on charges, right wing labourite Alan Lewis, former Conservative Health Sec, Stephen Dorrell and former Labour Health Sec, Alan Milburn. Dorrell has described this as “a new Beveridge report” with the most pressing need being “to establish new funding and management structures that ensure joined up and tailored care” ( sounds like charges !) Lamb said the Commission would engage public and staff , suggesting involvement of “NHS Survival” and “Care England” which represents social care providers. The next reading of this Bill is scheduled for 11th March, the same day as the NHS Bill so likely to crowd out discussion of the NHS Bill.