120000 patients have died waiting for NHS treatment on Rishi Sunak’s watch

Last Updated: September 1, 2023By Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Where being a patient gets you: 120000 people have died before getting this far with the NHS that the Tories have starved of resources.

Freedom of Information responses have indicated that 121000 people have died while waiting for treatment by the National Health Service in England – despite UK prime minister Rishi Sunak’s promise to get waiting lists down.

The number of deaths is higher even than at the height of the Covid-19 crisis – and double the number of deaths before the pandemic.

According to The Mirror, the Labour Party sent Freedom of Information requests to every trust in England. Although only 35 out of 138 trusts responded, it was possible to extrapolate an overall number of deaths from the figure they provided – 30611. It came in at 120695.

That is more than the 117000 who died during the Covid pandemic in 2021, more than twice the 60000 deaths in 2017-18, and more than three times the 38000 or so recorded in 2012-13.

This is at a time when England has the longest waiting lists in the history of the National Health Service, with 7.6 million people registered as waiting for treatment.

It is important to remember that when Rishi Sunak became prime minister, he promised to cut waiting lists – but there are 600000 more people waiting for treatment now than there were then.

We should also give weight to the words of a health service spokesperson, who suggested that the figure is misleading because the sample size is too small. But no accurate, verified figures have been forthcoming from that source

This in turn suggests that the true figure may in fact be much higher.

The Mirror article quotes Sir Julian Hartley, chief executive at NHS Providers, which represents hospital bosses, who blamed “historic underfunding … a pandemic, the cost-of-living crisis, workforce shortages and now industrial action” for piling pressure on the health service.

The historic increases in waiting lists – and deaths while on those lists – have come after successive Conservative governments deprived the NHS of vital funding, gave much of what little there was to private providers who frittered it away in share dividends, and ran underpaid medical staff into the ground.

So we can understand the responses of the pundits on ITV on August 30, when Owen Jones said the evidence suggests a conscious decision by the Tories to prioritise profits for rich businesspeople over the health of the nation…

… and with Labour, under leader Keir Starmer and shadow health secretary Wes Streeting, saying it will not end privatisation, it seems the agony will continue indefinitely.

Labour’s plan to cut waiting lists is to divert even more money to the private sector, to use their spare capacity. But this is just throwing good money after bad, for the reason described by Saul Staniforth, below:

Private health businesses work by taking medical staff away from the NHS, to work for the profit of corporate shareholders.

If any government – Tory, Labour or whatever – puts money into private firms to carry out treatment, then much of that cash won’t actually go towards making people healthier at all; it will simply boost already bloated shareholder bank accounts.

What’s the solution?

It isn’t hard to see.

For a start, privatisation of healthcare should be reversed, so money that currently enriches those shareholders can be put back where it belongs – making people healthier.

The defunding of the NHS must also be reversed, so that medical staff can be paid what they are worth, and are given a renewed sense of the value of their work. This Writer saw a meme today (September 1) pointing out that doctors and nurses are not 25 per cent less valuable than they were 15 years ago, so they should not have lost that much pay, in real terms.

Above all, UK politicians must accept that privatisation is a failed experiment that has killed thousands of people unnecessarily.

If that lesson doesn’t get through, and needs to be hammered home, then bereaved families now or in the future will always have recourse to one option:

They can put the evidence together, showing how political decisions led to the deaths of their relatives – and they can prosecute the politicians who pushed them through.

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Be among the first to know what’s going on! Here are the ways to manage it:

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the right margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

5) Join the uPopulus group at https://upopulus.com/groups/vox-political/

6) Join the MeWe page at https://mewe.com/p-front/voxpolitical

7) Feel free to comment!

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.

The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:


Leave A Comment