Dr Rebecca Ovenden, 32, an NHS Junior Doctor who saw her posts about the Tory cuts to NHS funding go viral on social media has been found dead in her own home. Dr Ovenden was found by her husband on the morning of March 28th.
Dr Ovenden became famous for her staunch defence of the NHS on Facebook in November 2015:
“Please don’t complain in earshot of your health care professional about waiting four hours to be seen in the middle of the night, free of charge by a doctor, with a smile on their face who has not been rude to you, who has reassured you, when the reason it took four hours to see you was because they were trying to save the life of an elderly man who had not wanted to make a fuss about a cold when he was dying of a raging chest infection.
Every day we run the risk of not seeing a patient who desperately needs medical attention in a timely fashion because our department is full of people who did not need to be there.”
Why are those people ending up in A&E? Cuts to social care, and the other parts of the NHS & Welfare state that ease the burden on our frontline services. This comes as revelations that half of the money promised to the NHS before the 2015 election went to Private Companies, the Red Cross declared the NHS was in a state of “humanitarian crisis”, the Health Secretary is enforcing contracts on the staff of the NHS, and the Tory party look to be using Brexit to further erode the workers rights of the staff in the NHS.
At a time when the National Health Service has run into a record deficit, Jeremy Hunt is visiting the USA & palming off the blame for NHS underfunding on the mistakes of NHS employees & health tourism – whilst his own staff commit suicide.
Suicides rates in the staff of the NHS are becoming a serious problem. In 2016 the family of Dr R Polge, 25, called for action to halt the “crisis” affecting trainee doctors after she went missing during a junior doctors’ strike and took her own life. Dr L Phillips, of North Bristol NHS Trust, has been missing since 23 February.
That is the price, the human cost of Tory cuts & privatisation. An ONS report says some NHS Staff are at a higher risk of suicide due to the increased pressure placed on the NHS by budget cuts and staffing shortages. The report comes as doubts over the position of EU nationals forces European NHS staff to leave the service in droves, exacerbating the problem.
The report by the Office of National Statistics has found that among women the risk of NHS Staff committing suicide was 23% up on the national average. The Office Of National Statistics explained that:
“THIS IS LARGELY EXPLAINED BY HIGH SUICIDE RISK AMONG FEMALE NURSES. ELEVATED SUICIDE AMONG FEMALE NURSES COULD BE LINKED TO A HIGH INCIDENCE OF PSYCHIATRIC ILLNESS.”
The pressure of budget cuts, as well as private practise eating in to existing budgets has lead to this.
Ominously, the first thing Jeremy Hunt did on seeing Donald “I’m going to destroy Obamacare” Trump come to office in the USA was to go to New York to seek advice on Healthcare from the Americans. At the start of the year Hunt wasted no time jetting off to New York, to “get tips” from Donald J. Trump’s USA on “how to better run our NHS.”
Stunning. The main cause of avoidable deaths as well as increased staff suicide rates is Conservatives underfunding of the NHS. It is worrying in the extreme that the first place ‘Secretary of State for Health’ Jeremy Hunt visited to talk about Healthcare results was the USA – which if you aren’t rich is one of the worst places in the developed world to get healthcare. Not Scandanavia, or Germany. The USA. Where they have private healthcare, which forces people to pay for insurance they can’t afford, or settle for no healthcare coverage at all.
Having just made £15 million from flogging off his own company, Hunt is now busy setting up the firesale of NHS services over the pond, a process that is well underway given that Richard Branson’s Virgin Care already have over 230 contracts in the NHS, to the tune of £1,000,000,000 of taxpayers money.
This shows yet more evidence that the Conservatives are partaking in a concerted effort to pressurise the NHS to breaking point pending privatisation – and this political agenda branded as “Austerity”, as well as robbing the public of their National Inheritance, now has a death toll numbering in the thousands. It’s not just patients who are being killed by the Tory cuts. Now it is the NHS staff too.