As I stood outside Worthing Hospital in the rain with the NHS staff picket last Monday morning, I was struck by just how much support there was for this strike among the passing people of Worthing.
It is no exaggeration to say that eight out of ten passing cars beeped their horns in support.
On the day that a senior Conservative cabinet colleague admitted that the privatisation of the NHS was a huge mistake, it seems that the general public share with the striking NHS staff the utter confusion over why incompetent politicians ruining the NHS through an unnecessary privatisation should get a ten per cent pay rise while those saving lives don’t even get one per cent.
It is great to see the fine campaign and petition being run by the Herald in order to save Worthing A&E and make public the threats to Southlands Hospital.
That our local MP, Tim Loughton, didn’t mention either of these in his column in the Herald on October 9 is genuinely worrying. I imagine that since Mr Loughton was part of the government who made this dreadful BUPA MSK contract possible through the Health and Social Care Act 2012, against the wishes of the majority of the people in the country and his constituents, it would be useful for Mr Loughton to use a future column to say why he thought putting Worthing and Southlands hospital services under direct threat was a good idea.
There is already a good deal of activity in place to stop this threat to Worthing Hospital. As part of the Herald campaign, there is an evening event in St Paul’s Centre, Chapel Road, Worthing, at 7.30pm to 10.30pm on Monday, November 10, called A&E SOS - Is Worthing Hospital for Sale? This is an opportunity for the public to find out more and have their say.
The best thing that Mr Loughton can do to contribute to the campaign is to publicly apologise for making this sorry farce possible in the first place.
Dr Carl Walker
for East Worthing and Shoreham, National
Health Action Party
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