For Immediate Release – Virgin Care HQ entrance occupied by NHS doctors and activists
On Friday 25th May at 8am Protesters from NHS Anti-Swindle Team, Docs Not Cops, ACT UP LONDON and other allied groups dressed as robbers, nurses, doctors, a GP Surgery and Richard Branson and staged a privatisation fresco outside the Virgin Care office.
The Virgin Scare Loot Squad arrived with bags of swag to their boss Branson at Virgin Scare office in central London. They had stolen hospitals, GP surgeries, lucrative contracts, medical equipment, patients, doctors and nurses from the NHS.
Protesters are opposing:
The privatisation and Americanisation of the NHS
The 400 Virgin Care contracts in the NHS
The NHS being forced to pay out for loss of Surrey Children’s Services contract
The serious failing of Virgin Care privatised services such as the Sutherland Lodge GP Surgery in Essex
The use of legal tax havens and complex tax systems by Virgin Care Services Ltd.
The 2014 Immigration Act which charges certain migrants for NHS treatment and discriminates against people who need care.
“The creep of privatization into the health system is intricately tied to the anti-migrant legislation currently costing lives. Privatization is bleeding the NHS dry whilst politicians blame the struggling service on vulnerable migrants trying to access the care they need. The government has continued to justify preventing migrants from accessing the health service with specious claims that they are contributing to its decline. Migrants not only cost the NHS negligible amounts but contribute enormously to its survival. It’s not migrants who need to be banned from the NHS, it’s Branson!” Erin Dexter, Docs Not Cops activist
In 2017 Richard Branson’s Virgin Care won a record £1bn of NHS contracts. Virgin’s £1bn haul means it now has over 400 separate NHS contracts.
In 2017 Virgin Care Ltd sued the NHS for losing an £82 million contract for children’s services in Surrey as well as Virgin Care Ltd paying no corporation tax in the UK. They received at least £328,000 but the final payment may be as high as 2 million pounds, if the other five commissioning groups are taken into account. A petition signed by over 75,000 people have asked for the money to be returned immediately.
The Sutherland Lodge GP Surgery, taken over by Virgin went from outstanding to inadequate in 18 months.Before Virgin Healthcare’s takeover in July 2016, the Sutherland Lodge practice in Chelmsford was among the 4% rated outstanding across England. But an inspection report published on 14 May by the CQC reveals that Sutherland Lodge is now rated inadequate overall
Ray Malone 07753110184 / email@example.com
Docs Not Cops, Erin Dexter 07880239964 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editors
NHS Anti-Swindle Team are a grassroots collective of artists, activists and mischief-makers who use creative civil disobedience to fight for a publicly run NHS and oppose all forms of private company control in the NHS, with a particular interest in the racketeers who are profiteering from ill health – https://www.nhsantiswindle.co.uk
Docs Not Cops believe that healthcare is a human right and that no one should be afraid to go to the doctor, either because they can’t pay or might be punished. We are doctors, nurses, HIV activists, students, teachers, and laypeople. Together we want to fight xenophobia and the dismantling of the NHS – http://www.docsnotcops.co.uk.
ACT UP LONDON – is a diverse, non-partisan group of individuals united in anger and committed to direct action to end the HIV pandemic, along with the broader inequalities and injustices that perpetuate it – www.actuplondon.wordpress.com