Private firms handed £15bn in NHS contracts over past five years
Private firms have been handed almost £15bn in NHS contracts over the past five years, figures show.
The value of contracts given to non-NHS providers, mainly profit-driven firms but also including some social enterprises, has soared by 89% since 2015, from £1.9bn to £3.6bn a year.
The figures cast doubt on the claim to MPs by the health secretary, Matt Hancock, in January that “there is no privatisation of the NHS on my watch” and repeated Conservative denials during the election campaign that the NHS is “up for sale”.
Labour has repeatedly raised the issue of creeping privatisation of NHS care during the election campaign, including the prospect that a post-Brexit UK-US trade deal could allow American healthcare firms to expand their provision of services to patients. The Conservatives have denied that.