Stop government cuts to our public health services! Enough is enough!
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The Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign asks Lewisham Council and Mayor Damien Egan to:
- Reconsider cuts to public health services caused by government by using reserves to stave off the impact on services which affect the most vulnerable, especially young children and mothers.
- Oppose government public health budget cuts and join other councils, the Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign and other campaigners to lead a campaign against these savage attacks.
We need to see action being taken now, in unity with health campaigns and councils. If you feel the same way as us, sign this petition. This is a health emergency that cannot be ignored.
Cuts to the NHS
In 2013 the Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign saved Lewisham Hospital from closure by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt. But our fight has had to continue.
Since 2010 the government has been systematically underfunding the NHS budget - by 30% up to 2020 - and just as systematically lying about it. This is impacting all areas of the NHS nationally and in Lewisham – from the hospital, to GPs, community and public health services. At the same time, government cuts have been made to hospitals, social care, education and housing, services for the disabled, all alongside savage benefit cuts.
Inequality keeps rising, our health is getting worse and still the cuts keep coming.
Planned cuts to public health services
The government has cut the public health budget by 15% since 2015 in real terms. And there are more cuts to come – nearly 4% per year up to 2020. There have also been devastating cuts to government funding of Councils of well over 50%. Because of this, services in Lewisham are nearly at breaking-point and Lewisham is threatened with losing valuable, life-saving services.
The Council is currently consulting on plans to cut £640 000 from vital public health services in our borough, because of cuts demanded by Teresa May's government. Public health includes a range of health professionals and services who keep us healthy in many ways. Since 2015 these have included Health Visitors and School Nurses, who play a vital role in protecting and safeguarding the health of babies, children and mothers. In 2016 only one year after being transferred from the NHS to the Council, school nurses were cut by 41% and Health Visitors by 16.8%. Now the Council is proposing a further cut to Health Visitors, when caseloads are already twice the recommended level
We say to the Council please reconsider and campaign against government cuts to public health and to campaign against them with us, other health campaigns and Councils.
Proposed cuts include:
- £196,306 (2.6%) cut to the Health Visiting service. This funds NHS staff who provide care to children under 5 and their families.
- £127 000 (3%) cut to substance misuse services.
- £10 000 (5.8%) cut for the Community Nutrition and Physical activity service.
- £10 000 (10%) cut to Neighbourhood community development partners.
- £192 294 cut to the sexual health services contract.
- £106 400 which they claim has already been saved in staffing and commissioning arrangements.
Read more here: savelewishamhospital.com
Read our guide to responding to the Council’s consultation here
Public health emergency
We say that these cuts to public health budgets are short-sighted and will only create greater costs to us all in the future.
We appreciate that many local politicians, including the Mayor, have met with our campaign and share our concerns. Now we want action to be taken to protect the people of Lewisham from the loss of important staff that these cuts will demand.
If you feel the same way as us, sign this petition This is a health emergency that cannot be ignored.
We all have to speak out. We all must act now. Enough is enough.
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