US health insurance company takes over 37 GP practices in London
This comes after the Health Secretary insisted that the NHS is "not for sale"
A large US health insurance company has taken over 37 GP practices in London, not to mention its existing portfolio of 22 primary care services it runs across the UK, according to Private Eye magazine.
Operose Health, the UK subsidiary of the American firm Centene, has recently acquired AT Medics, which ran GP practices in the London area.
A dozen community ophthalmology and dermatology services across the country are also provided by Operose Health, Private Eye has revealed.
US health insurance giant takes over 37 London GP practices, adding them to the 22 primary care services it already runs in the UK - and despite denials Matt Hancock's health white paper will make such privatisations by stealth more likely. Full story in new Private Eye, out now.
— Private Eye Magazine (@PrivateEyeNews) March 18, 2021
According to Private Eye, Operose Health now has 500,000 patients on its books, which are funded by the taxpayer.
Despite the Health Secretary Matt Hancock's insistent claim that the NHS is "not for sale," the Health Secretary has since sold off numerous NHS primary care services to private companies.
He took to Twitter to reassure the public: "We will never put the NHS on the table in any trade talks."
The NHS is not for sale. We will never put the NHS on the table in any trade talks
— Matt Hancock (@MattHancock) November 19, 2019
Private Eye magazine said that Centene Corporation has a 40 per cent stake in Circle Health Group, which is now one of the biggest healthcare providers in the country, with 50 clinics, hospitals and specialist centres in Great Britain.
A team of doctors, campaigners and academics wrote a letter to the Health Secretary last month, urging him to set up an investigation by the Care Quality Comission (CQC) regulator into Centene's running of primary care services in the capital, the Guardian revealed.
The Campaign Group 'Keep Our NHS Public' has written to Josephine Sauvage, the chair of North Central London CCG, asking her to not to transfer control over healthcare services to the private healthcare provider, AT Medics, which has made over £30m in profits over the past five years, the Guardian revealed.