August 21st, 2012

Labour’s NHS Global Flip-Flop

This morning Team Ed have expressed their outrage at the Coalition’s proposals to sell off NHS operations overseas, with the Labour leadership quickly condemning plans to set up profit-making hospitals abroad as “rampant commercialism“. Clearly they have forgotten that it was the last Labour government that came up with the idea in the first place. Andy Burnham said at the time:

“There is great potential to benefit from the exceptional knowledge and intelligence within the NHS. This will mean better value for that investment of taxpayers’ money and funds raised going straight back into NHS organisations, which will benefit patients across the country. We know that BBC Worldwide has already had success in this area, and now the NHS, another of this country’s best-loved institutions, must make the most of these international opportunities. A key part of responding to the economic challenge that the NHS faces will be realising the full potential of innovation, not only making effective use of our knowledge and skills at home, but also making money abroad that can be reinvested back into the NHS.”

Guido’s diagnosis? A severe case of the flip-flop…


  1. 1
    Ed Miliband says:

    Its a passing bandwagon Guido!


    • 4
      non-existent sub-ed says:

      First sentence – should be “..sell off..”


      • 12
        Dave says:

        Yes! New record for public borrowing in July!

        Borrowing up £3,500,000,000 on last year! Fucking marvellous or what! Mr
        Rothschild will be pleased!

        Toodle pip! And carry on shopping, little people! Just three more years to fuck this shithole completely! Then it’s hasta la vista, wankers!


        • 16
          Pawn Sandwich says:

          Gordons legacy – and its going to last for a few years so get used to it.


        • 23
          Synic says:

          Still on holiday are you Dave? Don’t come back you useless wxxker.


          • All politicians are psychopaths says:

            I think you meant to write “wanker”


          • What do you expect from LieBore’s wanker politico’s, when the LieBore voters and other toss pots who are “undecided” forget 13 years of unmitigated Walter Mitty politics, and would welcome them back with open arms (empty fridges, moribund savings and fuck all pensions) under the leadership of Militwat and BallsUp – shit stains both, with delusions of adequacy.

            How’s all that “We let them sell all the gold – for Euros!!” going for you now, you illiterate, BBC swindled, Gruniad reading, big government (and fuck the individual) twats? Still looking for more laws of repression and more taxes to fund your pathetic dreams of power and control?


          • misterned says:

            The selling off of NHS Assets and services is to comply with EU competition directives. Labour tory and Liberals will ALL sell these off and try to bullshit their way into whatever political capital they can gain personlly, without EVER telling you the truth about WHY they are selling it all off!

            If you value the NHS VOTE UKIP. Otherwise the EU will force us to sell it off.


        • 24
          Mervyn says:

          Oy vey! Print more money for the bankers!

          (another half a trillion pounds should tide us over till next Tuesday – have you seen the price of fine art, wines, vintage cars and underage rentboys?)


        • 79
          Gordon McFuckwit Broon (Never in the HOC doing the job I am paid for) says:

          you do realize that the borrowing rate for the UK is a lot less then when the one eyed fuckwit was in charge and also a lot less than it would have been for “spend spend spend Ed and Ed” It means we can borrow more to soften the economic situation without incurring the massive costs the last lot bequeathed us.

          No probably not because you are simply just another troll mong for thr Labour party



          • Gordon McFuckwit Broon (Never in the HOC doing the job I am paid for) says:

            directed at Dave Say’s More like a moronic brainless dipstick says if were honest


      • 19
        Immigration officer at Heathrow T3 says:

        But I thought that the whole of the world’s population simply come here to be treated by the NHS already!?!


    • 6
      Ah! Monika says:

      Labour in flip-flops now. How can we tell them apart from Liberals?


    • 22
      Ducky Stone says:

      Whatever the government says you can be sure that Labour will oppose it. Perhaps Dave should announce all Union subs will go to the Labour party.


  2. 2
    Andrew Efiong says:

    An NHS doctor would be quick to diagnose a severe case of kneejerk-itis, complete with foot-in-mouth syndrome.

    These guys are amateurs, they’ll say anything vote a vote and to please their union paymasters.


    • 39
      Bugler Bert says:

      I do not know why we bother, we all know that Liebour will win the next election – how? because when poeple go around saying that it was the Tories that sold the gold…. and the cloth-heads actually believe it…duh

      On the matter of the unions, the Govt should make it compulsory to hold elections every five years for top union jobs. Might ring a few changes there.


  3. 3
    Luke says:

    I wonder if the flip flop has anything to do with relying on Union cash?


  4. 7
    David 'The Last Grand Poobah of the Raj' Cameron says:

    The NHS will soon be on Mars


  5. 8
    DONE FOR DAVE (the shortest serving tory P M in history ) says:

    I’m either in front of Guido or on holiday LoL !


  6. 9
    Selohesra says:

    Whats happeneded to the biased bbc website – I have not been able to get on it for a few days?


  7. 10
    Ah! Monika says:

    Seen elsewhere…FT is behind firewall.


  8. 14
    annette curton says:

    1.) What assets has the NHS got overseas?.
    2.) Which areas of expertise would be sought after by prospective customers?.


    • 29
      Mornington Crescent says:

      They’ve been expanding certain ‘brands’ (urrghh…) overseas such as Moorfields in Dubai (natch) and, I think, Guy’s.

      Somehow, I suspect “Mid Staffs” or “Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells” wouldn’t go down so well, even in Mogadishu.


      • 64
        Animal says:

        I think it’s correct to say that a certain Andrew Durnham rejected calls for a public inquiry into Stafford Hospital’s horrific treatment of patients as well.

        Just how is it that an organisation that kills or injures their customers is subjected to the full wrath of the law while the NHS deny it ever happened/promises to not do it again/review procedure/learn lessons?


        • 74

          … and pay out compensation, without punishing the actual offenders, while the law is quietly changed by this Government to stop legal aid for children injured by medical negligence – third world? Third fucking reic.h eugenic.s, more like.


      • 92
        Bluebird says:

        Agreed. Newham General Hospital in East London is probably worse than hospitals in Mogadishu (mind you quite a few of the former residents of Mogadishu are now resident in Newham so they could probably tell you). For those who don’t know Newham General is a hospital where they can afford translators but at one point couldn’t find blankets to keep patients warm.


    • 31

      1. Recruiting offices for our medical staff
      2. Population control of unwanted babies and the chronically ill.


  9. 15
    lauder-lauder says:

    Very cruel Guido- making fun of the sick.
    Andy Burnham making rash statements was just an allergic reaction to his eyeliner and mascara.


  10. 17
    Ah! Monika says:

    This country is bleeding to death; when are the cuts going to start.


  11. 18
    SP4BS says:

    A curse of bollocks on both their houses.


  12. 20
    Fat idle useless NHS nurse who doesn't give a shit says:

    So we’re going to export MRSA and how to starve the elderly to death.

    Can’t wait


    • 33
      Pawn Sandwich says:

      Had a night in hospital four years ago, one of the nurses was wearing studs in her shoes – I kid you not. Kept me awake the whole night. You cannot complain because that is assault.


    • 93
      Bluebird says:

      If the NHS is going to export their incompetant quacks and worthless diversity officers then I’m all for it.

      Maybe there is a market for NHS services in North Korea after all they also have a state run health system.


  13. 21
    NotaSheep says:

    Biased BBC seems to be having major database issues. Maybe David Vance could comment here or on my blog as to how things are going.


  14. 35
    jgm2 says:

    What fucking madness. All we hear is that we can’t get enough qualified doctors and nurses as it is which is why we have to make do with the lazy, incompetent, complacent job-for-life arseholes currently employed by the NHS. How are we suddenly going to find enough doctors and nurses to open hospitals overseas?

    Personally I think we have it arse about tit. There must be no end of hospitals in Poland and the ex Soviet bloc with no end of qualified doctors and nurses. We should kit out a few planes and fly our sick over there to be treated at a fraction of the cost.

    I’d be looking to open prisons over there too. I bet it doesn’t cost 40K a year to keep a prisoner in Krakow.


    • 38
      Mornington Crescent says:

      Fly OUR sick over there? Just flying everyone else’s sick over there would be a good start.


    • 42
      Labourunionsbbc we are one says:

      This seems to make economic sense to me, but what would the Bbc party have to say about it?


    • 46
      SP4BS says:

      Well presumably they’d recruit the doctors locally.

      Hopefully its a scheme to get rid of some middle managers and the highflighing bullshit merchants. This “sell brand abroad” is a fine example of the bullshit based economy..


      • 54
        ho hum says:

        Selling Jo and Russell Brand abroad would do wonders for our balance of payments (oh, do we still measure that?).


      • 55
        jgm2 says:

        But if they played it smart we could save a fucking fortune.

        So – start by housing prisoners in Poland or Lithuania or Romania whichever low-cost European country gives the most competitive quote. Nobody is going to lose any sleep over that as a cost-cutting exercise. Except possibly the prison guards union but, you know, fuck ‘em.

        Once you’ve demonstrated massive cost-savings there then start flying folk abroad for operations.

        Establish the principle. Then expand on it.


      • 95
        Bluebird says:

        SP4BS says:
        “Hopefully its a scheme to get rid of some middle managers and the highflighing bullshit merchants. This “sell brand abroad” is a fine example of the bullshit based economy.”

        You mean like a sort of ‘B’ Ark as in Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy? I’m all for that. Can we include the diversity officers and sustainable transport advisers as well?


    • 62
      Backwoodsman says:

      There are plenty of largely empty villages, with good spacious houses and gardens, available for a pittance in the Balkans. Thats where we should be accomodating all of our immigrants.
      If they have a particular skill which means an employer wishes to sponsor them for a work permit, they could be given a temporary residence permit linked to the employment.


      • 66
        jgm2 says:

        There are also plenty of empty villages in Ireland which the UK could buy up at pennies in the pound and house our immigrants and home-grown single mothers there.

        The EU is fucking us over yet we fail to take advantage of all these obvious cost-cutting opportunities whereby Europe could be made to work for us.


    • 65
      Our Justice system is fucked ! says:

      Krakow ? I’d be willing to pay a little extra to see the fuckers off to Siberia !


      • 69
        jgm2 says:

        Me too. But Krakow has the ‘advantage’ of being in Europe. So it should (in theory) be a lot easier to make happen. Free movement of goods and services. Prison services for example. And hospital services.


    • 94
      Bluebird says:

      Krakow is too bloody good for them I’m sure we could find a home for our prisoners somewhere considerably more shit, Mali or Yemen for instance. What have the poor Poles done to warrant being landed with our criminal chavs?


  15. 37
    Labourunionsbbc we are one says:

    They haven’t forgotten what Andy Burnham said at the time:

    Nasty screw face Ed knows that, Floppy face Sloppy chops Ed knows that, the entire front (bottom) opposition bench knows that,

    but, they broadcast things like this to their brain dead voters because they know after the biased bbc have issued the liboore party response of ‘evil Tories selling off the NHS’ the damage is done, and can not be undone in the one track (progrssive) minds of those same voters.


    • 58
      Pundit Too says:

      Interestingly the disfunctional BBC got caught in its own wringer on this issue.
      On the one hand it magnified Labour protests over the “sell out” of the NHS; and then stated that it originated with Labour’s Burham and is being taken a stage further.
      Loony lefties and beeboids would state this reflects balance, but to the educated it would show that the BBC’s right hand has no co-ordination with its left hand (pun intended)


  16. 41
    Ah! Monika says:

    Great idea. Let’s import doctors and nurses and then export them.


  17. 44
    Beast in a Burkah says:

    Put Boris in charge of the NHS
    Nurses will all be slim , dressed in starched uniforms wearing seamed black stockings and high heels
    Then we charge for every visit


  18. 47
    Red Ed & His Band of Disrepute says:

    We are climbing on the Olympics export bandwagon. Hypocrisy is in our DNA.
    My labour party is a serious and vital patient of NHS services as we have senior members with Tourettes, viral retentive memory syndrome, et al et al.


  19. 48
    Grammar School Boy says:

    “We know that BBC Worldwide has already had success in this area, and now the NHS, another of this country’s best-loved institutions, must make the most of these international opportunities.”

    Burnham makes the explicit assumption that both the BBC and the NHS are much loved institutions. Both are left-wing monoliths, both are out of control and both long past their sell by dates.



    • 71
      Slippery Slope says:

      I don’t think Stafford General Hospital is one of the country’s best-loved institutions.


  20. 59
    Old Wilsonian says:

    Talking of ‘flip flops’ how about this:

    ‘We will not persist with the top-down re-structures and reorganisations that have dominated the last decade in the NHS.

    ‘They have caused terrible disruption, demoralisation and waste, and the people who work in the NHS have just had enough of it.

    ‘We believe we can make a big improvement in NHS performance – both in terms of quality and efficiency – within the structures that already exist.’

    David Cameron, 20 August 2009


  21. 60
    Terrible But True says:

    I think I will wait for the BBC’s reporting on this, when they totally impartially invite on totally impartial gobs, ask them totally impartial pre-agreed questions and, if the odd non-totally impartial glitch to the narrative creeps in by way of reply, totally impartially edit it out to run totally impartial party political opinions as ‘news’ from Today through to Newsnight.

    It just one of the things that makes them so unique.

    Meanwhile, for actual news, I’d love someone actually competent, professional and objective in the media not dogmatically embedded with any one of our risible political estates’ hypocritical self-serving party machines to explain how exporting a hugely inefficient, over-staffed, unaccountable state money-sink around the world is going to remit cash back here and improve high calibre staffing levels and performance domestically.

    Because, Labour or Coalition, or their respective broadcast and press cheerleading clubs, what’s been or being punted doesn’t add up on an sane basis I can see.

    Or is the notion that good care can be provided at a profit sustainably (and to make a profit sustainably good care would need to be provided) so long as it is not within these shores… for various reasons… possibly not covered on in stadium pitches?

    And any discussion on such, like an ever-growing raft of topics, from certain religions to George Galloway’s new BFF, goes straight to ‘comments are closed’.

    This country careers towards establishment propaganda supported by censorship more and more each day.

    And that’s not a good thing.

    Thank heavens for the internet and independent blogs by the whole sorry politico-media ‘elite’ of all hues. I just hope what’s free and untarnished by fealty to dogma will be enough to let the bovine masses get to see and twig where they are being led and by what means.


  22. 75
    keredybretsa says:

    I would say that the NHS is the last sort of export needed in Europe. Perhaps the Greeks or Ruskies would be happy. But from what I have personally experienced and what I see, hear+read then you keep it at home.


    • 81
      Old Wilsonian says:

      So that’s another mistake the Tories have made, eh keredybretsa. There seems to be one a day, dont you think?


  23. 82
    G. Osborne says:

    Well, thank god no-one here is mentioning the deficit growing by £600 million, rather than falling by £2.8 billion in July. All going according to plan. I’ll be in the foreign office by the end of the year.


  24. 89
    Anonymous says:

    Whatever the party politics, it’s a bloody stupid idea…


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