The purpose of Hands of Bedford Hospital (HOBH) is aligned with the umbrella group Hands Off Our NHS – Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes which is to oppose any cuts, closures and privatisations at Bedford, Milton Keynes Hospital and Luton & Dunstable Hospitals and the  wider health and social care system. Our aim is to work to campaign in unity  to protect services throughout Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes, reinstate previously reduced or closed services and to ensure services are free for all at the point of use and  regardless of ability to pay.

In support of this campaign pledge, Hands off our NHS – Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes will:

  • call for an end to the Sustainability and Transformation Partnership across BLMK which has posed a threat to maternity, paediatric and Accident and Emergency Services at the three hospitals for the last 8 years
  • campaign against the development of BLMK as an Integrated Care System (formerly known as Accountable Care Organisations or Systems). We support integrated care, but believe that the proposed development will further remove the NHS from local accountability and will result in greater privatisation and rationing of health care
  • in recognition of serious and sustained underfunding of the NHS and social care; campaign for increased government funding for our local health and social care services so that local people have full and timely access to high quality, fully staffed, person centred care. This must include social care; primary care (including GPs, dentists, opticians and  community pharmacists); secondary care (hospital services);  mental health services (including the return of in-patient mental health services to Bedford); tertiary care (specialised); community health services including district nurses and OTs and ambulance services
  • campaign to end cuts to Public Health and support all attempts to reduce health inequalities including ensuring homeless people have full access to health and social care
  • ensure that our locally elected representatives –  Mayors, Councillors and MPs –  fight hard and publicly in defence of local health and social care services in Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes
  • demand complete transparency of the decision making process of the current Sustainability and Transformation Partnership and Integrated/Accountable Care System. Patients and the public should be able to access and participate in decision making at all levels and all papers should be in the public domain. All changes and developments to services should be based on clear evidence of improved clinical outcomes  and full impact assessments
  • scrutinise commissioning and contracting decisions to ensure that the decisions made are in the best interests of the public and use of resources; oppose all privatisation of health services in BLMK and campaign for the return of privatised services back to the NHS
  • oppose any plans to build private for profit health services such as the planned private Spire Hospital in Milton Keynes
  • if necessary, to fund-raise so that the people of Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes can legally challenge any cuts/and or closures arising from the STP/ICS/ACS process