The 2017 Naylor Report proposes selling off NHS assets. This latest Public / Private Partnership scam involves the government working with property developers to force a “fire sale” of valuable NHS buildings and sites. These developers will then build “community hubs” and lease them back to the NHS, making massive profits. These sales are going ahead without planning for future need and with no public consultation.
Once the land and buildings have gone, it makes privatisation all the more easy…..
Click on the website NHS Property Services for details of NHS building and land currently under offer / recently sold.
Article from Labour Party (Sept 2018) Rise in NHS Land Sales
Non-investment in estates:
The Lowdown (3rd March 2021) Mounting repairs threaten hospitals
The Lowdown (29th March 2021) The History of Privatisation part 4: The Early Days of PFI
From The Lowdown (20th April 2021) – read the full article “Urgent action needed for post-pandemic recovery” here
The NHS ‘estate’ is in a poor condition, ill-prepared for the challenges of social distancing and remote consultations.
In 2019/20 – the latest figures available – the cost of clearing the hospital maintenance backlog alone was estimated at £9bn (up 40 percent on a year earlier) and much of that backlog related to risk issues dating back to the 1960s and now identified as ‘significant’, potentially impacting on patient safety.
The role of PFI consortiums is contributing to the problem. Last year the National Audit Office noted, “PFI providers have an incentive to limit expenditure on maintenance and rectification work in the final years of a contract.”
The situation in primary care (where barely 50 per cent of GP surgeries consider their premises fit for current needs) and social care (where it’s estimated that more than 80 per cent of care home stock is over 40 years old) is no better. Both sectors need major investment.
But given the scale of the problem the response from the Department of Health & Social Care has been underwhelming. The £600m in new investment unveiled by health secretary Matt Hancock last year, for example, barely scratches the surface when it comes to “building back better”.
And the government’s ‘aspirational’ plan to build 40 new hospitals appears to be just more of the same. The promised £3.7bn funding for them will struggle to meet the actual £20bn construction cost, and so the bulk of the money pledged is expected to go to just six sites.
The much-hyped Nightingale concept, introduced to bolster the NHS estate during the pandemic, has failed to add anything to the mix bar eye-watering expenditure. Earlier this month it was revealed that the Nightingale hospital in Bristol – which cost £16m to set up, and a further £1m a month to run – closed at the end of March, despite never having treated a single covid patient.