The Department of Health is in talks to consider which parts of NHS Blood & Transplant (NHSBT) could be sold to the private sector to make the service more “commercially competitive”.
NHSBT employs 6,000 workers and relies entirely on volunteer donors.
In an attempt to keep staff calm, NHSBT management say that this is “speculation”—but admit that the chief executive and finance director are involved in the review.
Management has already caused disruption over the last four years by centralising blood labs and cutting hundreds of jobs nationwide.
Blood storage, distribution and even behind-the-scenes testing are far less secure.
If private companies start biting off parts of the supply chain then the result will
be chaos—a decline of standards for blood products as corners are cut, and a race to the bottom for workers’ wages.