Protecting Scotland’s NHS from Westminster Privatisation


Scotland’s NHS is under threat from a Westminster government determined to open up the health service across the UK to privatisation.

Although responsibility for health is devolved to the Scottish Parliament Westminster can still change funding arrangements for Scotland’s NHS.

The Conservative government at Westminster is obsessed with privatising the NHS. In its desperation to find new deals to replace our pre-Brexit trading arrangements with Europe it will come under increasing pressure to include the NHS in any major deals with America and other countries.

It has already drawn up a new Health and Social Care Bill which gives private companies a say in how health services are run. The Unite union has dubbed it ‘’the NHS privatisation Bill’’. The Union’s general secretary Sharon Graham says it will be “used to further run down the NHS and to bring in more privatisation by the back door”.

Fears have been further fuelled by the Westminster government’s rejection of an amendment to the Bill which would have enshrined ‘’a comprehensive publicly funded health service, free at the point of delivery’’ and explicitly ruled out the NHS from trade deals.

Why on earth would the UK government reject that amendment unless they already plan to privatise the NHS? 

A former chief medical officer for Scotland, Sir Harry Burns, has no doubts that will be the case. ‘’The vultures are circling the NHS, so be very afraid,’’ he has warned.  Although Scotland’s NHS is controlled by the Scottish parliament we shouldn’t be complacent and believe that its future is protected.

If privatisation is introduced south of the Border those private companies will look to make a profit by slashing costs to increase profits, reducing services and keeping salaries low. More expensive treatments will be ruled out. Clinics and outreach centres will close.  When those cuts to vital services and treatments are introduced Westminster will cut the funding for Scotland’s NHS budget which is dedicated to providing a free at the point delivery service and destroy Scotland’s NHS.

The Westminster government simply can’t be trusted with the NHS north or south of the Border. Only independence will protect the NHS in Scotland from Conservative plans to privatise the health service by stealth.

We support independence not for the sake of a political principle but for the people, as a means to an end: to build of a better Scotland.

We believe that independence offers Scotland the opportunity to be a better nation. A nation that more closely matches the values, hopes and aspirations of the people of Scotland.

As a sovereign independent people, we can truly protect Scotland’s NHS and our nations wellbeing. Independence offers us the chance to create a society and an economy that are more resilient, fairer, equal, ambitious, internationally connected, environmentally sustainable and successful.

That’s why we believe in Scotland, in an independent Scotland

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