Falkirk MP, Eric Joyce, has come under attack from the SNP for supporting a motion within the Westminster Parliament that welcomes the involvement of the Private Sector in the NHS.
Falkirk Council Health and Social Services, Cllr Cecil Meiklejohn has described this as “a betrayal of the people of Falkirk”.
Now the controversial Labour MP is being challenged to clarify his and his party’s position on the privatisation of part or all of the NHS.
Clllr Meiklejohn said,
“First we have the local Labour Party signing up to a formal pact with the Tories in Falkirk Council.
Then we had the Labour leader, Ed Miliband signing up to the Tories cuts agenda.
Now we have one of our local Labour MPs endorsing Tory policy of increasing privatisation of the NHS in England.
Eric Joyce needs to clarify exactly what Labour’s position is on the NHS. The contrast between what is happening within the NHS in Scotland compared to the service south of the border is significant.
If Eric Joyce believes that privatisation of the NHS in Scotland is in line with the views of his constituents then he is sadly out of touch with local people.”
The following 32 Scottish Labour MPs voted on Monday 16th January 2012
Sarwar, Anas – Deputy Leader of Scottish Labour
Curran, Margaret – Shadow Scottish Secretary
Alexander, rh Mr Douglas
Bain, Mr William
Begg, Dame Anne
Brown, Mr Russell
Clarke, rh Mr Tom
Donohoe, Mr Brian H.
Doran, Mr Frank
Harris, Mr Tom
McKenzie, Mr Iain
Murphy, rh Mr Jim
Roy, Mr Frank
Teller – David Hamilton
ROLE OF THE PRIVATE SECTOR IN THE NHS
That this House believes there is an important role for the private sector in supporting the delivery of NHS care; welcomes the contribution made by private providers to the delivery of the historic 18-week maximum wait for NHS patients; recognises a need, however, for agreed limits on private sector involvement in the NHS; notes with concern the Government’s plans to open up the NHS as a regulated market, increasing private sector involvement in both commissioning and provision of NHS services; urges the Government to revisit its plans, learning from the recent problems with PIP implants and the private cosmetic surgery industry; believes its plan for a 49 per cent. private income cap for Foundation Trusts, in the context of the hospitals as autonomous business units and a ‘no bail-outs’ culture, signals a fundamental departure from established practice in NHS hospitals; fears that the Government’s plans will lead to longer waiting times, will increase health inequalities and risk putting profits before patients; is concerned that this House has not been given an opportunity to consider such a significant policy change; and calls on the Government to revise significantly downwards its proposed cap on the level of private income that can be generated by NHS hospitals.