@ P.Damien I'm sure you will not let the facts get in the way of a good argument but have you considered:
The Valencia region in Spain, where 20% of health services are provided by private sector organisations, do so at a cost 25% lower than the public sector.
In Germany, a third of hospitals are run by for-profit organisations and a further third by not-for-profit organisations. All hospitals are accessible to German citizens through the national programme.
In Britain, private sector companies have operated prisons for some years. In 2010, an independent evaluation of HMP Doncaster, operated by Serco, found that “the prison is considered to be leading the way in terms of the rehabilitation revolution”.
A number of failing Local Education Authorities have been run by for-profit companies since 1999. Cambridge Education @ Islington became the education partner of the London Borough of Islington in 2000. By last year, the borough's GCSE results have nearly caught up with the national average, having once being among the worst.
In 2008 Northamptonshire County Council agreed a three-year contract with the for-profit company Edison Learning to improve seventeen primary schools and four secondary schools in the council's remit. In the first two years of the contract, the proportion of 15-year-olds achieving five good GCSEs increased from 24.8% to 33.3%.
These are just a few examples of how the private sector can and does run things better, cheaper and more efficiently than the bloated public sector you admire so much.
Successful but how a wholesale walk out of nurses in acute care be considered safe. I don’t know about you but I am not sure if I would want that on my conscience. I was out in Australia in the 1990’s (not nursing at the time) but I remember the Unions were pretty strong and militant then. They were threatening to pull all the public sector workers out on strike because the NSW government wanted to cut their holiday uplift pay (a marvellous scheme whereby public sector workers were paid extra to compensate them for money they would have earned in overtime and unsocial hours payments had they not been on holiday). It was like going back in time to the 1970’s Mike would have been in heaven, still the old joke about adjusting your watches back 30 years when landing at Sydney international airport had more than a ring of truth about it. The other thing to bear in mind is that 68% of people are employed by the public sector in Australia so any strike is likely to have a bigger impact especially if it is backed up by other public sector workers. But do you really think striking is the responsible and justified thing to do at the present time with the economy just beginning to crawl out of recession?
Pleeeeease listen to what I am saying because this really is the last time I am going to say this.
For some workers some of the time industrial action can be an extremely effective means of getting what you want. It amounts to economic blackmail but even today it can still be an effective economic weapon which depending on the circumstances may or may not be justified.
But not, in my opinion for nurses, leaving side the question of if striking is morally justifiable or not for nurses (in the current economic climate and bearing in mind the pay and conditions we already get compared to the private sector no in my opinion) strike action would be ineffective for other reasons and so for that reason alone it is a mistake for the likes of Mike to advocate it. But then Mike is obviously living in a socialist utopia of his own where Red Robbo and King Coal still hold supreme and the labour party still hold to clause 4 and sing the red flag at conferences. Sweet but hopelessly deluded, times have moved on sorry to say.
What do I propose? Privatise the NHS and replace it with an insurance based system such as they have in the rest of Europe. Let private companies provide the routine blood tests and investigations and rationalise what is left into fewer but larger centres of excellence. We have too many middling sized DGH’s, even Peter carter accepts that point. The NHS has become a huge bloated bureaucratic behemoth and it is time someone put it out of its misery.
Dear God Mike how many more times are we going to go round this argument? I rally am beginning to loose the will to live now.
I have not said nor have I ever said that industrial action is ineffective just that it would not work for the nursing profession for reasons that I really can’t be bothered to explain, again. Whether the fire-fighters “won” is a debateable point they don’t seem terribly happy with their lot at the moment and no doubt will threaten more industrial action if they face substantial cuts in the current round of spending cuts.
My point about the miners strike is that even the most determined and well organised strike will fail if there is sufficient political will; the means that are employed to defeat the strike depend on the situation and the strike. Strong arm tactics were used against the miners in 1984 because they were mounting a political challenge as much as anything a challenge that was backed up with a significant amount of violence. The same tactics are hardly likely to be used to defeat a nursing strike, should one ever materialise.
A legalised nurse/ patient ratio may be a good idea in theory but rather harder to apply in practice (exactly how long is a piece of string) so demanding one is unlikely to bear fruit. So you demanding one is analogous to you personally throwing your toys out of this particular pram.
It is a relief that there are not more people with views as poorly thought out as yours but enjoy life back in the 1970’s anyway.
By us DEMANDING, and GETTING a legalised Nurse patient ratio etc etc........
Mike it doesn't matter how often you throw your toys out of the pram no one is going to listen to you or your demands. And no the Firefighters didn't "win" as you put it they settled after threatening industrial action which never actually materialised in any meaningful form. And as for strikes working well it didn't work for the mine workers in 1984, or the steel workers or the ship builders or.............
Comment on: Anger following attack on chief nurse role
No a very apt analogy if you think about it.