GPs stage protest against NHS reforms

GPs, hospital consultants and patients battled the heavy rain in East London on Saturday to protest against the Heath Bill and cuts to the NHS.

GPs, hospital consultants and patients protesting in East London on Saturday (Photograph: Monica Alcazar)
GPs, hospital consultants and patients protesting in East London on Saturday (Photograph: Monica Alcazar)

Around 60 campaigners assembled in a park in Hackney before marching to the local Homerton Hospital to speak out against the NHS reforms.

Hackney GP Dr Jonathon Tomlinson said a key message was that the government could not be trusted with the NHS and that the reforms posed a ‘serious threat’ to the viability of local hospitals and other services.

He said that despite the ‘extraordinary weather’ the atmosphere at the protest was ‘very jolly’.

‘It was like being at sea,' he said. 'You could barely see from one end of hospital car park to the other as the rain coming down horizontally in sheets. It was very good that people felt so strongly in those circumstances.'

Bronwen Handyside, secretary of the campaign group Keep Our NHS Public, said the protestors included GPs, hospital consultants, local councillors and members of the campaign group.

She said: ‘We decided to come together to fight the Health Bill. It’s so urgent at this point as it's being rushed through parliament.

‘We wanted to ensure that the local community understands what the implications are for the health service and get people to take action now to show the government they are against the Bill.’

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