25 Years of Health Emergency on DVD
Celebrating the first 25 years of LHE's tabloid newspaper Health Emergency, this searchable DVD has scanned and electronic versions of all 66 issues produced to date. Track events in your local area, or just surf back in time to see some of the campaigns and issues that have come and gone since 1984.
This DVD (files in pdf format) is available to union branches and individuals for just £25, institutions £100.
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If you are paying by cheque, please make it payable to "London Health Emergency" and send (with your full postal address) to LHE, BCM London Health Emergency, London WC1N 3XX.
Conference VideosCondition Critical: Health Care, Marketising Reforms and the Media
Held at Coventry University between June 17-20 2009
The international conference, organised by the International Association of Health Policy in Europe and hosted by Coventry University, focused on "Health care, marketisation and the media". It was attended by delegations from 15 countries and heard 38 papers.
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PrivatisationDuring the mid 1980s, LHE developed a national database on the privatisation of hospital support services, and argued strenuously against the competitive tendering process, pointing to the negative impact of privatisation on the quality of patient care.
This work grew too demanding for a London-based organisation, but we maintained our critique of the private contractors, and strongly supported union action to challenge the profiteers.
More recently, John Lister of LHE has worked with UNISON nationally to research a detailed response by staff in both privatised and in-house NHS cleaning services to the "Matron's Charter" and other government guidelines on hospital cleaning.
The report Cleaners Voices was published in January 2005 at UNISON's first ever national conference of hospital cleaning staff. The pamphlet was researched by John Lister of LHE for UNISON as part of its Cleaner Hospitals campaign, 2005.
Private Finance Initiative
LHE has always strongly opposed the creative accountancy and monopoly contracts associated with the Tory government's Private Finance Initiative, which has required all NHS development schemes since 1993 to seek private capital.
The policy has now been embraced by the New Labour government, with a package of PFI schemes under way at a total cost of £6.5 billion. But the long term cost will be even larger, and PFI is a major factor in the reduction in numbers of hospital beds. With the first schemes already completed, mainstream NHS hospitals have, for the first time since they were nationalised in 1948, begun to be owned and run by private firms for profit - with the long-term additional cost to be borne by the taxpayer, and severe consequences for NHS staff and patients.
Health Emergency has continued to monitor the evolution of this policy and its implications, and to work with organisations and union bodies fighting back against PFI. Keynote documents in this have been
Mental HealthIn 1990-91, LHE also worked with COHSE to develop the report Where's The Care? giving what was for six years the only detailed analysis of the gaps emerging in mental health services in the capital as the large old psychiatric hospitals on the outskirts of London began to speed up the closure of beds.
Since 1997, LHE has worked with UNISON to research and publish two documents surveying the problems of mental health services, (The Credibility Gap, April 1997, and The Care Gap, May 1999). The second document gave the background for a major conference in central London, addressed by Health Minister John Hutton on May 27 1999.
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