Responding to the news that Belfast City Council has given the green light for first phase of £100m King's Hall healthcare facility plan, a NIPSA spokesperson has reacted strongly. Assistant Secretary Kevin McCabe said:

“NIPSA is extremely concerned that such a private healthcare facility is:  
  • A further erosion of the NHS principles of providing healthcare free at the point of use
  • It will be predicated on the ability to pay therefore creating a two-tier system of health provision
  • It will seek to promote profit by further reliance on the private sector to provide services that should be delivered by the NHS
  • They will draw staffing resources away from an already understaffed HSC workforce in Northern Ireland
  • This bad news for citizens and, future users of the NHS
  • All healthcare unions must resist this further destruction of our much-loved NHS
  • Any such new service delivery models must be fully scrutinised to ensure that tax evasion measures such as witnessed by Virgin Healthcare does not occur if this proposal goes ahead.”

Assistant Secretary Kevin McCabe also sent a letter to MP/MLAs pressing them on these two issues and asking for there support at Belfast City Council planning meeting on Tuesday 13th:

  1. The development of a Private Healthcare Village is a political issue and will be fundamentally opposed by NIPSA and the other health unions and staff side organisations.
    The Bengoa Report and Delivering Together 10 Year Plan was adopted by the NI Executive and Assembly without public consultation.
    Is this your vision?
    Are you prepared to implement a two tier health system and further dismantle our much loved NHS?
    If not – support us and stop these plans.
  2. The building development is a planning issue but it is also a further attack on the delivery of NHS services and we ask you to publicly object and support our opposition.
    From a planning perspective it will cause further traffic congestion and parking issues to an already horrendous situation in South Belfast in terms of amenities.
    We implore both local MP’s/MLA’s directly affected by these proposals to declare their opposition.
    Is this seriously what our MP’s and MLA’s are all about – Profit Before People?

Please support this petition and object next Tuesday at the Planning meeting scheduled at Belfast City Hall.