The National Health Service has provided comprehensive, high quality health care to all since its inception in 1948.
Access to healthcare has been based on need – not on wealth and income. The sense of solidarity which is the mark of a caring society is reflected by the existence of the NHS. The NHS has evolved and adapted to changing needs since its beginnings and, throughout, this fundamental principle has remained largely unchanged until 2012.
The Health and Social Care Act became law on 27th March 2012 despite sustained public protests and strong professional opposition – this Act exposed the NHS to a market in healthcare services, and promoted competition between health service providers. This backward step, together with a need to finance the expensive PFI contracts put into place over recent years, plus the continued and strategic underfunding from the current Government have all contributed to the situation we now face.
It is devastating that we now stand at a precipice. We are faced with the harsh reality of the situation – our access to comprehensive, trustworthy, and local health services which are free at the point of need have all been undermined. Either we act now to try to remedy the situation and salvage what we have left, or the NHS will go for ever. It must be properly funded and must be protected from any further leak of resources into profits for private shareholders. The values of the NHS cannot be matched by the private sector.
IT’S OUR NHS – publicly funded, publicly provided and publicly accountable, available to all on the basis of need.
“Keep Our NHS Public North East” is a group of North East people who care for the future of our NHS. We strongly believe that the NHS should remain a fully funded public service, and not become privatised, and we campaign to uphold these values, both locally and nationally.
We comprise, mostly, members of the general public, together with some doctors, nurses and other health professionals who believe in the NHS. We meet together approx every 6 weeks in Newcastle, or hold Zoom meetings, to plan and feedback on our Campaign activity – we are an open and friendly group, and we guarantee that you will be made very welcome. We are not aligned to any one specific political party (members belong to the range of parties – or none), and we aim to build the widest coalition of individual members, and work together with the widest range of local groups and organisations to achieve our aims.
Details of our next meeting are listed here. If you travelling a distance, then it may be that there is a neighbouring health campaign group which is based nearer to your home, and these are all listed here. Having said that, people attend our KONPNE meeting from all over the North East, and you are welcome to attend whatever your address is – we have no geographical boundaries.
KONP North East is one of over seventy local KONP groups who are affiliated to national KONP. The constitution of the national organisation states that
“The principal object of KONP is to stop the privatisation and commercialisation of our NHS and campaign for the re-instatement of a comprehensive, universal, publicly funded, publicly owned, publicly provided and publicly accountable, national health service which is free at the point of use and has the resources needed to provide excellent health care for all on a long term, sustainable basis. This will involve campaigning to resist cuts and closures within the NHS. KONP will respond to the proposed integration of Health and Social Care services in ways which are consistent with its commitment to an entirely public National Health Service”.
The new National Health Service; born 5.7.48; still here today. We need to ensure that it is still with us tomorrow.