Private company Virgin to run north Kent community hospitals – BBC News

Laughing all the way to the bank: Richard Branson of Virgin [Image: Reuters].

This is just to remind you that the Conservative Government is carving up your National Health Service and handing it over to private companies.

Did you vote for it?

If not, then why are you putting up with it?

A £126m contract to run four NHS community hospitals in north Kent has been awarded to a private company.

Virgin Care is to take over services at Sittingbourne Memorial, Sheppey and Gravesham hospitals and Livingstone Hospital in Dartford.

The NHS clinical commissioning group (CCG) said Virgin Care came top of four shortlisted bids.

Source: Private company Virgin to run north Kent community hospitals – BBC News

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18 thoughts on “Private company Virgin to run north Kent community hospitals – BBC News

  1. Dez

    God help them…they never learn. Whenever I see these large contracts having NHS Procurements fingers prints over them I fear the worse. The usual reassuring management speak is sprinkled throughout ie rigorous procurement process; taken a whole year;, thorough evaluation involving the world and his dog; maximising value (in this case savings must be minimal or none as the saving not detailed) alongside improving service provision; robust contract management with contract penalties etc etc. The parties who are most close to delivering these Health processes would never have the time and professional resources and budgets to put together a glossy professional looking sales pitch that would also include professional sales suits to present the best picture. and financial reassurance that these contracts require. Also the level of detail and bumph these procurement exercises need, most of which is probably irrelevant to getting the job done, are complicated and detailed which most deserving companies would never have the time or expertise to compete with the way a blue chip would present the submission. Many historic projects have gone before with Procurement driving the costs to the extent the deliverer ends up failing to deliver any profit and service/patients suffer. The service management falls to folk who have never agressively managed a clever contract provider or got the time or resource to do it properly and Procurement have no interest in the service once they have done their job. The use of Key Performance Indicators to manage service levels are usual over generous,such no penalties are applied and indifferent results are dumbed down, until finally the actual patients who are failed start screaming and jumping up and down and finally the press/media wake up to another failed service that has crashed landed. All that glistens is not gold. I also draw no comfort from the fact that at this time only selected services are being outsourced as per the home ambulance outsource it is the usual drip drip drip of privitisation it’s just a matter of time…and money.before they go for the rest..

  2. David

    Branson – gets everywhere spreading despair and incompetence. Just the sort of rich half wit needed to run a privatised part of the poor old NHS. Bet he’ll make money from it, though.

  3. Rupert Mitchell (@rupert_rrl)

    The only reason why we are putting up with it Mike is because we do not know of any way to stop it before the next general election when I hope, for the sake of common decency and fairness for all, we elect a proper government; a Labour one. I am sure all Labour supporters and many Conservative ones would like to know the answer as to how we stop putting up with it before it is too late to rectify the greed and destruction of OUR NHS.

  4. Ellen Graubart

    Virgin was already running medical services in 22 parts of the UK about 4 years ago, probably many more now. The BBC didn’t report on this at all, so why now?

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      Reporting of Virgin’s healthcare acquisitions has been regular and accurate, if I recall correctly.

  5. David Woods

    As they are now ‘privately run’ they should be removed from the NHS Trust, and Branson to cover full costs of running them!

    Oh, was there by any chance any ballots run by the said ‘authorities’ to see which ‘option’ their constituents preferred?

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      So you want to speed up full privatisation by putting these hospitals completely in the hands of a private company, leaving it free to charge it’s own prices for health care, no matter whether people can pay, in the knowledge that they can’t go elsewhere.

      1. Mike Sivier Post author

        No, because this IS the NHS in that part of the country. You seem to have trouble understanding what is happening to your health service.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      I have not banned your comment. I simply haven’t got round to moderating it yet. Was at a meeting yesterday and have only just got back to the blog.
      As a rule, though, I take a dim view of people who try to pressurise me into publishing their words.
      It is in the light of this comment that I will judge your previous contribution.

  6. amnesiaclinic

    It is absolutely tragic, Mike and so few people see the whole picture as you do. The country was in a real mess and almost bankrupt after ww2 but the labour government put in place the NHS, and free education for all. The third pillar that was never put in place was full employment. Since then the tories have been slowly dismantling it bit by it and now they can’t hide how much has disappeared. The suffering and heartbreak of poor people who could not afford treatment is still within living memory but we really need to wake up and realise exactly what we are losing. The best health service and education in the world.
    Yes, we can stop it by getting out at the May elections and spreading the word. We need compassion-led politics not compassion-less.

Comments are closed.