Save our NHS Campaign

SAVE OUR NHS CAMPAIGN - On Friday MP's will debate and vote on a private members bill intended to protect the NHS from increasing privatisation. The new law will also keep the NHS out of TTIP - the US-EU trade agreement that threatens to lock privatisation into public services and allow Giant US Health Care companies opportunities to access lucrative contracts for provision of health care services in the NHS. If you are interested in influencing how your MP votes on this issue please follow this link

you.38degrees.org.uk/effort...

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  • Re; The new law will also keep the NHS out of TTIP - the US-EU trade agreement that threatens to lock privatisation into public services and allow Giant US Health Care companies etc .

    It might well be a disaster for the NHS to go down this route but when you have the Vasculitis logo on top of the page does this affect our charitable status?

  • No not at all, why do you think it should?

  • The aims of Vasculitis UK are:

    To support those suffering from vasculitis diseases and their families by providing information and advice.

    To inform and educate those with vasculitis about their illness so that they are empowered to take greater control of it.

    To work with other organisations and medical professionals to improve the recognition, diagnosis and treatment of vasculitis diseases.

    To raise awareness of vasculitis disease among medical professionals and the general population.

    To enable vasculitis sufferers to contact others with vasculitis.

    To encourage and support the formation and development of local vasculitis support groups.

    To support research into the causes and effects of vasculitis and into improvements in the diagnosis of vasculitis and into treatment of people suffering from different types of vasculitis.

    .....................................................................................................................................................

    I can see why the Investor-to -state dispute settlement mechanism of this trade deal are controversial and why possibly the whole thing may be undesirable but to promote a fight against the deal is probably best done via organisations with different aims to Vasculitis UK.

    Does it affect our charitable status though? I don't know but it seems too remote from our purpose to get involved, to my limited understanding of such things.

    Regards Steve

  • Hi Steve, there is a 40 page Guidance document on Campaigning and Political Activity, published on the Charity Commission website. Such documents are always open to interpretation but it is pretty explicit in allowing political activity where it involves raising awareness of issues affecting the charity or its aims or its members and attempting to influence political parties or individual members of a political party in their decisions in such situations.

    You quoted the aims and objectives of the charity, pointing out that these do not specifically include any suggestion of lobbying or campaigning. However, in reality, over the past couple of years Vuk has contributed to the development of the UK Rare Disease Strategy, which has now been adopted as UK law; we have representation on the Rheumatology CRG of NHS England, which influences policy; we were very much a part of the NICE consultation on use of Rituximab; we have been part of a campaign, with Genetic Alliance UK to improve care for people in Wales suffering from rare diseases; we lobbied the Scottish Medicines Consortium to approve the use of rituximab for treating ANCA vasculitis. I think that as Vuk is the effective voice of the "Vasculitis Community" in the UK, our members would not expect us to shun such campaigning or lobbying.

    In the UK, the vast majority of people receive their healthcare from the NHS. Thus any change that might have an adverse impact on that care might have an adverse impact on those suffering from vasculitis, our members.

    I would have thought that "support" implicitly does encompass any activity that seeks to maintain or improve care for those with vasculitis, unless otherwise proscribed by CC rules. One of our stated aims is "to work with other organisations and medical professionals to improve the recognition, diagnosis and treatment of vasculitis".

    My interpretation of that aim would include supporting the continuing effectiveness of the NHS, as the main provider of healthcare in the UK.

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