Welcome to the RCN London region - representing 53,000 nurses across the capital
Regional Director Bernell Bussue writes...
On 18 May London residents, trade unions and civil society groups will gather in Central London to protest at the direction of change in our capital’s health service. RCN London is supporting this peaceful demonstration and RCN members will be out on the day.
Across London health services currently face major restructuring. In many cases units are proposed for closure despite vocal opposition from local residents. Money appears to be leaking out of the system to the Treasury, rather than being reinvested as promised in healthcare. All of this comes amidst increasing private sector involvement in the commissioning and provision of services nationwide.
Our priority at the RCN will always be patient care. We support reform that is in the best interests of patients. But RCN London believe that some of the changes currently proposed in London are designed not to improve services, but simply to save money.
This is most obviously true in Lewisham. The A&E unit is proposed for downgrade because of the financial failings of the neighbouring Trust. RCN London spoke out strongly against the plans.
With the Nicholson Challenge demanding that £20bn of savings be taken out of the NHS by 2015, and in all likelihood more after that, our fear is that successful NHS services are being compromised by financial considerations. The drive to squeeze endless savings out of the NHS will end up damaging patient care.
In South West London the Better Services Better Value programme proposes closure of successful services – but the consultation has been difficult and expensive, and the recommendations are opposed by staff and residents alike. In North West London four A&E units are planned for closure or downgrade and the lengthy process ahead of us means further uncertainty for the workforce and users of services.
London’s nurses and healthcare workers are proud to be part of a National Health Service. Our members are right to stand up to any attempt to undercut a universal provision. Our support goes to all NHS workers and campaigners who are standing up to make their voice heard in London on 18 May.
If you plan to attend please confirm by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add you to our 18 May 2013 circulation list to send you details of the event and where RCN London members and friends should meet on the day.
Bernell Bussue, SEN, RMN, RGN, DMS, MBA.
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Need our support? Contact the RCN London team whose number and emails are on these web pages. You now dial a single number for your initial call - 0345 772 6100 - giving a faster response via RCN Direct, who will give you the information you need. If it is more complex, you will be transferred to the appropriate member of staff at RCN London.
We know when times are tough outgoings are reviewed. However, now is not the time for anyone to let their membership lapse. It is equally important to ensure we have your correct details; you can update these by contacting RCN Direct on 0345 772 6100 or going to MyRCN. If you want information about full membership, health care assistant membership, student or associate membership, please go to the benefits of membership section or join online using MyRCN.
To extend our reach, we always need members willing to volunteer and become active in supporting our aims. Why not make this the year you decide to get active? Go to the RCN activist area to find out more.
Our office is located at RCN London Region, 9th Floor, 236 Grays Inn Road, London WC1X 8HL. Telephone 0345 458 6968.
The RCN has reduced its subscription rates for health care assistants and assistant practitioners. Those new to joining the College will pay just £4.06 per month for the first year.