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To: Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group
Stop the NHS Sell-Off in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough
To Each Member of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough CCG
We call upon you to halt the bidding process for the integrated older people's services with immediate effect.
A complex set of services, partly designed by the bidders to maximise profit, and fragmented between suppliers and subcontracts, is inappropriate and risks the care and safety of some of the most vulnerable people in our region.
Why is this important?
As reported in the national press, Cambs and Peterborough CCG is pressing ahead with possibly the largest single privatisation of NHS services to date: the competitive commercial tender for a new "pathway" for older people. This complex set of service includes not just community services, but hospital care.
This tender is estimated at £800M over five years; a significant proportion of which will be lost in profit to successful private bidders. At present the list of bidders includes Serco (alleged to have reported false service data on another NHS contract), Care UK (whose chairman donated £21,000 to the private office of Andrew Lansley), Circle, and United Health UK (part of the US based UnitedHealth).
The Coalition has repeatedly claimed that their reorganisation of the NHS would not lead to privatisation, and would put GPs at the heart of commissioning. It's clear from this tender that CCGs are acting as procurers from private companies. This tender is clear evidence that the NHS in England is being reduced to a shell, no longer providing healthcare but merely providing profit opportunities to private companies under orders from the Government and Monitor to ensure competition.
Only six months into its role, Cambs and Peterborough CCG has decided to use the care and support of older people for its largest sell-off. Older people are perhaps the last to complain about the service they receive, and make up the vulnerable group which became the subject of the Francis Report into alleged care failings at Mid Staffs Trust. This tender puts the quality and safety of their care at risk, as private companies will be protected from transparency by "Commercial in Confidence" agreements.
This tender must be halted. We must take our NHS back.