Received from: BDA
Congress notes with concern the manifest failures and problems that have resulted from the privatisation of NHS procurement and supply chains, and the disastrous results of this in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic. Privatisation left us unprepared for a pandemic. If it were not for coronavirus, the huge problems with outsourcing NHS supply chain might not have been brought to public attention in such a stark way. Now that they have been brought to our attention we need to act, urgently.
Congress agrees that the procurement of goods for the NHS should itself be a function of the NHS, not an additional profit stream for private contractors who have not delivered an efficient or effective system. We need an NHS supply chain that puts people before profit, which takes responsibility instead of abdicating it, and which prioritises long-term planning and community safety. Procurement should be brought back in-house, with a direct line of accountability through the Department of Health and Social Care, the secretary of state and parliament.
Congress therefore calls on the government to:
i. end the privatisation and outsourcing of the NHS supply chain with a simplified system to be brought under direct NHS control
ii. keep all NHS services, including logistics and procurement services, off the table in international trade agreements
iii. hold a public inquiry, as soon as possible, into their handling of the PPE crisis, looking at the role of the NHS supply chain in the failings that have emerged and are still emerging.
British Dietetic Association