NHS and health

Letters

Published on: Wed, 05/02/2020 - 12:36

Bob Carnegie’s interview in Solidarity 530 Tackling the union bureaucracies is instructive for understanding trade unions in the current period.

As Bob says, some of the problems are not that new, but I was reminded strongly of the situation in the railway industry in Britain.
The overwhelming majority of organised train drivers in Britain are members of Aslef, a union with membership open only to employees responsible for the “operation of trains”. The industrial union on the job, the RMT, has members
across the grades, cleaners, station staff, engineers, back office staff etc.

Aslef may

Wuhan: a new coronavirus

Published on: Wed, 05/02/2020 - 10:50
Author

Les Hearn

WHAT HAPPENED IN WUHAN?

People visiting a seafood and wild animal market a few weeks ago almost certainly picked up a species of virus from live wild animals on sale. This virus, a member of the Coronavirus family, causes fever, a cough and sometimes pneumonia.

It seems to be relatively easy to transmit between people and identified cases have risen sharply to well over 10,000 in a few weeks, most in the city of Wuhan with a few (so far) in other towns and countries.

Each infected individual is estimated to be infecting about three others. This rate needs to be reduced to near zero to

Letters

Published on: Wed, 29/01/2020 - 12:12

Exactly four years ago, you published my article on homeopathy, provocatively titled “Homeopathy: the one NHS cut we should support”. In it, I examined the evidence provided by the Faculty of Homeopathy itself for the efficacy of homeopathic treatments and found it to be unconvincing and inconclusive.

The latest version of the FoH’s evidence, written by its then President, the late Dr Peter Fisher, cites the same reviews and claims these are conclusive evidence of benefit. However, “gold standard”systematic reviews of homeopathy can find almost no convincing evidence of benefit (the terms

Feminism - AWL conference document 2019

Published on: Tue, 21/01/2020 - 21:10
Author

AWL conference 2019 (Jan 2020)

As revolutionary socialists, fighting for a society based on human need not profit, Workers’ Liberty has always been serious about being class struggle socialists and feminists. This document - passed at AWL conference 2019 - restates our basic perspectives, and outlines what we should be campaigning around now.

Tories: prepare the fightback!

Published on: Wed, 08/01/2020 - 11:42
Author

Editorial

Boris Johnson has talked of ending austerity, bolstering public services and appealing to the working class, but on all the evidence so far that is a threadbare velvet glove on an iron hand.

NHS spending is set to increase, but by nothing anywhere near what is needed to fill the shortfall from its 2010-20 cuts. The tide of privatisation will continue to roll forward.

The NHS is probably the best protected part of the public sector. The Institute of Fiscal Studies estimates that by 2024, non-NHS spending will be 14% lower than in 2010.

The provisional local government funding settlement

Letter: The placebo effect

Published on: Wed, 18/12/2019 - 10:51

Reading Richard Shield’s letter (Solidarity 527, bit.ly/rs-hom), I have no doubt that taking his homeopathic remedy really is helping him.

Taking such remedies can lead to a measurable, and clinically significant change in someone’s symptoms — symptoms like vomiting, symptoms like intractable pain that has not responded to morphine. And unlike morphine these remedies have no side effects at all.

Everything that we experience in our brains is connected to our bodies. Our brains thin at the base of the skull and are continuous with the thick spinal cord that runs down our spine and spreads its

Homeopathy: comments by a far left physician

Published on: Wed, 27/11/2019 - 19:59
Author

Martin H. Goodman

In France, where up to 60% of the population seeks homeopathic treatments, the government has now announced it will no longer reimburse the bills for those treatments through social insurance. In Britain, support from the Royal Family long kept some homeopathic provision within the NHS, but in 2017 the NHS recommended that GPs should stop providing for homeopathic treatments.

First off, let’s be clear: “alternative medicine” (also referred to as “complementary”, “integrative”, and “holistic” medicine) is quackery. At best worthless, often harmful, and at times deadly.

Alternative medicine is

Facts and figures of the election

Published on: Wed, 20/11/2019 - 19:33
Author

Sacha Ismail

The Tories have condemned Labour’s plans as “eye-watering”, “wild”, “reckless”, “unaffordable” and set to “bankrupt the country”, with much of the press singing in tune.

Just after Labour’s 2017 election manifesto came out, Solidarity estimated that its proposals would “take some tens of billions of pounds — John McDonnell estimates £50-odd billion — out of the £1,000 billion a year which currently goes to the rich and the very well-off, or to enterprises under their control”.

The 2019 manifesto isn’t out until Thursday 21 November, but the indications are it will be a similar document to 2017

Labour Campaigns Together

Published on: Wed, 23/10/2019 - 10:31
Author

Colin Foster

A coalition of grassroots Labour Party campaigns has launched a website, Labour Campaigns Together.

Its aim is to press the Labour leadership to include left-wing policies voted through at the 21-25 September Labour conference in Brighton in its manifesto and in the actions of a Labour government.

The key policies are:

• A just transition to a decarbonised economy by 2030
• Build 100,000 social rented council homes a year
• Transition to a 32-hour working week with no loss of pay
• Protect and extend the rights of migrants
• End all forms of criminalisation of rough sleeping
• Free our unions:

See you next year!

Published on: Wed, 18/09/2019 - 09:29
Author

Vicki Morris

Janine Booth has written about her experience in her new book The Big J vs The Big C: Issues, Experiences and Poems in the Battle Against Breast Cancer, charting her diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer.

One in two people will develop cancer during their lives. The increasing incidence is mainly a result of more people living longer.

Cancer was something that people were ashamed to mention, endured by a silent minority in private, but now is more openly talked about.

There are many different cancers, some eminently survivable, taking different treatments to cure them or keep them at bay.

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