AFTER reading the front page of the Express (March 22nd), like most fair-minded people I was surprised to read 270 nurses have left East Lancashire hospitals in the last two years.
I find this statistic most depressing and find myself wondering why this should be happening. Perhaps the meat of the article sheds some light on the reasons. It is with this in mind I feel I should be allowed to make at least some comment, given that it has received such prominence.
First there can be no doubt the reasons underlying this sorry statistic is because of cuts being made from Central Government.
I also think vast amounts of money has been wasted by this government’s deliberate attempts to reduce the wage bill, only for them to realise, too late I fear, that this was causing serious damage to the health service and then appoint a number of new staff members; the money lost has been brought about by having to pay the departing staff largish amounts of redundancy money.
Then we come to our so-called champion of our hospitals, Gordon Birtwistle, who the article states has campaigned for the return of services back to Burnley General Hospital.
My answer to that is he says he has but I don’t think, by the lack of success, he has campaigned very hard. He has, however, expounded an awful lot of hot air.
However, I digress. Our MP blithely rabbits on that the loss of medical staff was unacceptable and goes on to state to lose that amount of nursing staff in just two years is ridiculous. I could give his words verbatim but I will stop there.
However, the point I am making is that this man is part of this right-wing Government which is inflicting the pain on us. If people leave they leave for a reason. Does he not think putting a cap of 1% on pay increases demoralises an overworked medical staff? Again I could go on but to make statements like these while being a part of the Government inflicting the pain is to my mind, and I don’t doubt to other people’s as well, totally unacceptable.
There is also the fact that this, as described in the article, has been going on for two years.
Again I would question just why it’s taken him all this time to make any comment on the matter and even now all we get from him is a statement saying he will keep a close eye on the death-rate situation.
Yet again Gordon that particular horse bolted long ago.
MR K. ROYLE