Second Bill has similar dangers

THE letter from Stephen Richards (News Guardian, January 5), draws attention to the Welfare Reform Bill going through Parliament that will have disastrous results for many people with cancer and asking readers to try to stop it.

However, readers should know that there is another Bill, now in the House of Lords, which carries similar dangers for those with cancer and indeed for all of us – the Health and Social Care Bill.

A majority of doctors are seriously worried that this Bill is intended to greatly increase the part played by private companies in the health services, making it more difficult to plan and co-ordinate care.

The private sector has never returned full statistics on what it has done, often does not do adequate follow-ups and in some cases seems to not keep adequate records.

Since they are for-profit businesses their main priorities are cutting costs and making a profit.

If they do not make a big enough profit they close down.

And when things go wrong, they expect the NHS to sort them out and us the taxpayers to foot the bill.

Impartial international studies consistently find our NHS is amongst the most efficient, giving the best cover for the population and the best value for money.

It is something for Britain to be proud of and it looks as though it will be seriously damaged if this Health and Social Care Bill goes through.

Let’s all do our best to make sure it does not.

JOYCE LEESON

Retired public health doctor

Tynemouth