Commenting on the NHS staff strike, Communications Manager of the Adam Smith Institute, Kate Andrews, said:
The unions taking part in today’s strike are deluded about the state of the NHS. The NHS operates on a budget; if more funds are distributed to pay staffers' salaries, spending in other areas must be cut. The only employees to be denied a 1% pay rise are those who have automatic progression-in-the-job rises as part of their contracts, yet the unions are still demanding that funds be diverted from patient care to paychecks.
There is strong evidence that the NHS could fall into a budget crisis as early as 2015 – even before the next general election – which could result in longer patient waiting lists, cuts to core staff and a depletion in the quality of public health care. But instead of addressing this looming crisis that will affect all staffers and patients throughout the UK, some unions have joined together to fight for a pay increase for workers who already benefit from guaranteed pay raises.
The consequences of their demands will be seen in the long-term as well as the short-term, as their strike threatens the quality of service patients will be provided for hours on end. What healthcare in Britain needs is a serious conversation about reforms that would make the NHS financially viable for the next ten years, let alone for future generations.
Notes to editors:
For further comments or to arrange an interview, contact Kate Andrews, Communications Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org / 07584 778207.
The Adam Smith Institute is an independent libertarian think tank based in London. It advocates classically liberal public policies to create a richer, freer world.