Jeremy Hunt’s rubbish response to my letter about the NHS contract

In April, I wrote to my MP, Cabinet Minister Justine Greening, about the fact that there’s no evidence that the new contract being imposed on the NHS  will improve anything and some evidence that it’s discriminatory. My letter’s here.

Greening forwarded me the Health Secretary’s response – which doesn’t address any of hunt-response-1 my points about the NHS. Greening’s covering letter is here, and Hunt’s letter is here and here (sorry for it being two files…)

I have today written to Greening again, and will post here if I get a response.

 

Dear Justine,
Thanks for forwarding Jeremy Hunt’s response to my letter to you (published here) concerning what he’s doing with the NHS. And by the way, congrats on your appointment to education.
Sadly, neither your letter nor Hunt’s addresses any of my points about the NHS. Those were mainly actually points for you, rather than him, as they relate to the response of the rest of Cabinet to all this. I remain interested in your/ his response to those points. To repeat, they are:
  • Hunt claims that the new contract will improve patient outcomes (or maybe cost-effectiveness) – as does your letter to me (1 June). But we don’t know that that’s true because the contract has not been tested. Why is he allowed to dismiss the idea of testing it in a small area before imposing it across the whole system? (He might be wrong: it might make things worse!)
  • Why is he allowed to introduce a new contract which even his own department admits is discriminatory against women? (discussed in the Telegraph here). The measures he cites in his letter may be true, but they’re obviously insufficient to prevent even his own department saying that the contract is discriminatory.
  • Why is he allowed to keep mis-citing the BMJ study, claiming that it shows that the higher rate of deaths at weekends results from there being few doctors around then, when it doesn’t, and the Editor of the BMJ has publicly written to him to say that?
Your letter (1 June) talks about constituents being worried about the effect of the strike. To be clear, that is not my concern at all: I, and many other Putney residents with whom I’ve discussed this, am concerned about the effect of what they are striking about, i.e., the contract which Hunt seems bent on imposing on them despite having no evidence that it’ll improve anything.
Please send your response by email, not post: the last one got lost in the post for two months.
With thanks
Caroline
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