NHS Bursaries

‘Short-sighted Tories’ says a poster held up by a nurse behnd a man carrying Unite union flags, and the decision, recently confirmed, to end NHS student bursaries seems a good example of that.  Student nurses and those training for other medical professions deserve bursaries because during their training they actually work alongside trained staff in the NHS, providing essential services. They need bursaries because these placements remove the opportunities other students have to supplement their student loans with part-time jobs. Their placements are essentially unpaid part-time jobs.

The government sees we have a shortage of nurses, so it wants to create more training places, but with bursaries that would be expensive. So it decides to cut the bursaries, with little if any thought on how that will impact on those who train.

People at all levels of the NHS have supported the campaign by some current nursing students – who won’t themselves be affected when the bursaries are stopped – to get the government to change its mind. As well as seeing the hardship it will cause for students, they see it as a part of the Tory plan to privatise the NHS, a process that is well under way, and seems only likely to be stopped if we get a radical party coming into power at the next election.  Given the current in-fighting in the Labour Party it is hard to see that happen, though there still remains a chance that Jeremy Corbyn will prevail and end up in charge of a coalition government; it is the only chance for the NHS.

You can read more about NHS student bursaries and the march and rally in January in NHS Bursaries rally before march and NHS Bursaries March, though there was a longer rally at the end of the march I was unable to cover.

There will probably be a few days without more posts on this blog as I take a little break – but I’ll be back soon.


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