Stop the Centene Take-Over of our GP Surgeries

by NHS Patients Want Centene Out

Stop the Centene Take-Over of our GP Surgeries

by NHS Patients Want Centene Out
NHS Patients Want Centene Out
Case Owner
My name is Anjna Khurana, I am an Islington councillor, and one of many patients across London who were told nothing about our GP Surgeries being taken over by a huge for-profit US Corporation.
Funded
on 19th November 2021
£34,283
pledged of £33,000 stretch target from 1,514 pledges
NHS Patients Want Centene Out
Case Owner
My name is Anjna Khurana, I am an Islington councillor, and one of many patients across London who were told nothing about our GP Surgeries being taken over by a huge for-profit US Corporation.

Latest: Feb. 23, 2022

We have heard from the Courts...

Hello Friends & Supporters

It is with deep regret that I have to tell you that the High Courts did not rule in our favour - they did not agree with us that the decision by North Central London Cli…

Read more

Welcome to Stage 2 of this appeal to stop GP practices being taken over by the American corporation - Centene. I hope you will help us.

In early 2021, Centene (through its UK company Operose Health Ltd) took over dozens of GP surgeries in London through the takeover of GP company AT MEDICS. This takeover now means that they are controlling the services for over 375,000 NHS patients - it is still unclear if any of them were told or consulted about the take-over.

Since the news broke, hundreds of patients, councillors and members of the public have written letters, protested outside surgeries and have made their feelings clear. 



We do not want our GP practices taken over by American corporations.

Here is a reminder of why. Operose Health (the Centene UK Subsidiary company) issued this statement in their public acounts in 2019.


"Position at 31 December 2019 and future developments ... Rationalisation of our business activities… Has continued into 2020, as the business seeks to divest of activities that have not met profitability targets. As a result, on 31 March 2019, Operose Health Limited exited the Surrey Borders Partnership NHS Trust CAMHS contract, and on 1 July 2019, Operose Health (Group) UK Limited divested its complex care division, including the contracts and related assets." 


Is this the sort of thing we expect to hear from the NHS? I hope you agree it is not.

From this statement it's also clear this is not just about London GP Surgeries. Operose Health Ltd have already taken over twenty other GP surgeries across England, Centene has major shares in BMI and Circle Hospitals... The corporate takeover of NHS services can happen anywhere in the country.

This case affects us all. 

How you can help Anjna


Thank you to everyone who donated earlier this year. It was wonderful to experience the overwhelming public support for the case. The public donations raised £43,424, which is an incredible achievement and I hope you will continue to support the case by donating whatever you can and sharing this page with friends and colleagues.

The legal team think we will be taking our case to the High Court in January or February 2022. That is why we are asking for donations now to show the courts we are prepared.

We need to raise an additional £30,000 to cover the 'capped costs' which is the limit on the amount Anjna would have to pay to NCL CCG’s lawyers, if she were to lose the Judicial Review.

Any additional funds will go towards the costs of extra court fees, solicitors and barristers who have already been working hard with us and are working on a very reduced fee.

Your support is invaluable. 

Please contribute whatever you can and share this page now!



What are we trying to achieve?

The hope is that the courts will judge that North Central London Clinical Commissioning Group acted unlawfully in making their decision and that the decision will be quashed. 

Here are the grounds that the Judge has granted permission on: 

Ground No.1 - Mis Direction

The CCG didn't consider all the implications of the take-over because they approached the takeover decision thinking they had no choice but to accept and approve the proposal

Ground No.2 -  failure to inquire / take into account relevant consideration

The decision makers made no attempt to carry out proper 'due diligence' ie. a full investigation into the workings of Operose and the relationship to the American corporation Centene

Ground No.3 -consultation/involvement

What involvement? What consultation? 


What's at stake?

Sitting in the court listening to the legal team presenting to the judge, I was suddenly aware of how important this case is to all NHS Patients, not just in London but across England. Especially now that more and more private companies are moving into the NHS not just as outsourcing companies but positioning themselves into decision-making committees and boards that should be free from profit-seeking interests.

Louise Irvine GP, from Keep Our NHS Public, agreed:

“When a large American corporation like Centene takes over this many GP practices we have to worry about their motive. In America they are sued regularly for fraud and malpractice and we do not need their profit seeking behaviour dictating the quality of healthcare for patients and the working conditions for staff. It’s a deeply worrying situation and I am delighted that the Judge has seen the important public interest in this case”.

Steven Carne of 999 Call for the NHS added: 

“The London CCGs allowed a multi-million dollar American corporation to become one of the largest Primary Care Providers in England. There are arguable grounds that they have done this unlawfully.  As Anjna has pointed out, this has wide ramifications. Operose/Centene could become major players in so-called ‘Integrated Care Systems’ that will control the NHS if the Health and Care Bill currently going through Parliament become law. To have companies making financial and ethical decisions in the NHS is not acceptable."

Please make a contribution if you can. All of the money raised goes to the costs of bringing this case to the courts. Every penny helps.

Thank you once again for all the support over the last eight months and I hope you can continue to spread the word about this case.

Thank you.

Anjna




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Update 6

NHS Patients Want Centene Out

Feb. 23, 2022

We have heard from the Courts...

Hello Friends & Supporters

It is with deep regret that I have to tell you that the High Courts did not rule in our favour - they did not agree with us that the decision by North Central London Clinical Commissioning Group to allow Operose Health (Centene by another name) take over the London GP chain ATMedics Ltd. was unlawful.

At this stage we want to take a little time to consider what options are available to us and I hope you will bear with us as we think about the next steps.  

I'm so sorry not to have better news but I felt it was important to let you know before the Press release the information. 

Thank you once again for being such strong supporters of the case and we will keep you updated of further news.

Anjna & The Team

To read the full decision please click here: https://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2022/384.html

Update 5

NHS Patients Want Centene Out

Feb. 2, 2022

Two Days of Courts and Campaigners!

Hello Everyone

On behalf of myself and the team I'd like to say a huge "thank you" to everyone who came to support us outside the courts on the mornings of the hearing. 

To have so many dedicated and concerned campaigners turn up to be there meant so much to us all.



People from all over London came to support, many of whom were patients in boroughs where they had also discovered that their  AT MEDICS GP Practice had been taken over by Operose Health (Centene). Talking to them it was very clear they were deeply concerned and anxious about the American culture of profit taking priority over patient access to treatment.



After two days of intense presentations, the Judge asked both Barristers to check they were happy with the legal papers overnight before she began her deliberation. Mrs Justice Hill thanked the legal teams for their evidence and said that she would take good time to consider the 'serious issues' in the case. We expect to hear the judgement withing the next 4 - 6 weeks.

We featured in the Morning Star, The Big Issue and The Guardian  and there were some journalists from the healthcare press at the court. We have a Press Release available if you would like to use it for the media in your local area.  

Email: challengeohl@gmail.com

We left the courts feeling that the last twelve months of working on the case had been worth it. Thanks once again to everyone who came to show support and to all those who shared our photos and posts online. We hope we have done you proud.

Anjna and the team*


*Special thanks to team members who could not join us at court but gave essential support online throughout the case.




Update 4

NHS Patients Want Centene Out

Jan. 19, 2022

Join us outside the High Courts!

Hello Friends 

And a Happier New Year to us all! 

I would like to invite you to join us outside the High Courts on the mornings of Tuesday 1st and Weds 2nd February  9am

The Royal Courts of Justice, The Strand, London, GB WC2A 2LL


A large presence outside the courts will demonstrate that this is a case of huge public interest and massive concern for thousands of patients across London and the country. 

Please do join us. It would be wonderful to make a bold clear visual statement for the press and social media with banners and placards.  

If you would like more details please contact us: challengeohl@gmail.com

We are all excited to be finally in the courts and our legal teams' prepared arguments are strong and clear. The time has come! Let's make it a case to remember.

If you can join us at the courts on the 1st & 2nd Feb see you there! If you can't be there in person don't forget you can play a vital part by sharing our posts and Tweets on those mornings.

Thanks for all your support.

Anjna


Joining us

Nearest Tubes: Charing Cross - 8mins, Holborn 10mins

Full transport details here: https://tfl.gov.uk/maps?Input=The+Royal+Courts+Of+Justice&InputGeolocation=51.512942%2c-0.113614



Update 3

NHS Patients Want Centene Out

Dec. 17, 2021

Have a restful break

Hello

Just a very brief note to say thanks again for all the support you've shown over the last few months. 

I hope we all manage to find some rest over the festive period and we can come back in January recharged and ready for our court case. 

Please put the dates in your diary. February 1st & 2nd we are at :

The London High Courts

Strand, London

WC2A 2LL

It would be wonderful if people can join us outside the courts before we go in with the legal team. 

And if you can't make it to London you can share our photographs on social media and make sure people know about the case. 

Thank you. Have a wonderful holiday break and see you in 2022. 

Don't forget! 1st & 2nd February 8.30am

Best wishes

Anjna


Update 2

NHS Patients Want Centene Out

Nov. 22, 2021

You've done it!

Hello 

Thank you so much for all your support!  Not only with donations but your messages have been heartening and inspiring. We've closed the donations tab now as we've reached our target with a little to spare!

The last week has been a whirlwind! There have been mentions in the press and people are talking about the case.  That's great! 

And there is so much to talk about as people realise that the presence of big corporations like Centene inside our NHS is bigger than most people think. We're right to be challenging the decision making process that is allowing these companies into positions of control.

I'll update you when news occurs. 

Thanks once again and I hope you'll follow us all the way to the courts. 

Best wishes

Anjna


Update 1

NHS Patients Want Centene Out

Nov. 12, 2021

24 hours of incredible support!

A huge 'THANK YOU'!! to everyone who has donated already. 


To have raised this amount in just one day is quite overwhelming. And it shows how much public willpower there is to remove American for-profit companies from our NHS - even though mainstream media are silent on the extent of Centene's takeover.

I hope it's okay to share with you some of my discoveries since starting this case in the Spring. I started this action because of the changes to my GP surgery but now I realise that this case goes way beyond simply the takeover of GP surgeries in North London. It affects the whole of the NHS and all of us as patients.

I was shocked in the summer to discover that not only has Centene Corporation become England's largest provider of GP practices (what this case is fighting) but it is now also  England’s biggest private hospital healthcare provider.  

In July this year Centene took full ownership of Circle Health Group hospitals at a cost of £900m.

Given that 5.8 million people are now waiting for hospital treatment, what safeguards are there to prevent Centene incentivising its Operose GP employees to recommend patients either to pay for private care in Centene hospitals, or to choose Centene hospitals when they are provided with NHS funds for treatment in a private hospital?

How has the Government allowed this conflict of interest to arise?  

I'm sure, like me, you can see that in this context my Judicial Review is even more significant than I thought it was. Please keep sharing this page with friends and networks.

I can't thank you enough.  It means a great deal to know that there is such strong support and feeling.

Thanks again.

Anjna

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