Unite research has found that the Tory party has received almost £300,000 of donations since 2008 from an investor at the heart of Vanguard Healthcare, the private company at the centre of a health scandal at Musgrove Hospital in Taunton.
Roderick Brooks is the co-founder and director of a private equity group MML Capital whose fund majority owns Vanguard Healthcare. Mr Brooks gave a donation of £50,000 to the Tory party as recently as February this year. The donations have totalled £279,311 since 2008.
Vanguard is at the centre of a major scandal which highlights the dangers of the Tory agenda to privatise the NHS through the Health and Social Care Act.
Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: “This scandal involving a private healthcare company should have alarm bells ringing across the country. The fact that the co-founder of the company behind Vanguard healthcare donated almost £300,000 to the Tories raises serious questions. Who are the Tories working for? It’s not us. The government had no mandate to sell-off our NHS but they did just that.
“Dozens of Tory MPs, voted for the sell off and had links to private healthcare companies. Now Tory spinners are even trying to claim they didn’t understand what they were voting for. Scandals like this remind people how the Tories are ripping apart our NHS, putting our health at risk, while private healthcare bungs them millions in donations.
“It also serves as a reminder why David Cameron won’t protect the NHS from TTIP, a EU-US trade deal that threatens to make the sell-off of the NHS permanent. The trade deal will give US companies and Wall street investors the right to sue the government for billions if it tries to reverse the privatisation of the NHS.”
NHS patients who suffered complications during eye surgery outsourced to Vanguard felt the procedures were rushed and complained that they endured pain during the operations and were shouted at by medical staff, a confidential report obtained by the Guardian revealed. Health bosses are refusing to publish the damming report.
A recent investigation by Unite also found that since 2012 a scandalous £1.5 billion has left the NHS and gone into the pockets of just 15 private companies linked to 23 Tory MPs and Lords who voted for the Health and Social Care Act (see Tories in £1.5 billion NHS sell-off scandal
Also known as Rory Brooks, he is also on the board of the Centre for Social Justice
set up by Iain Duncan Smith the centre claims to be ‘Putting Social Justice at the heart of British Politics’.
Jim Read the other founder of MML, and the founding partner of the fund that owns Vanguard, is a US citizen and could use an EU-US trade deal called TTIP being negotiated in Brussels and Washington to protect his investments at a tribunal if the trade deal goes through.
For further information contact Ben Norman on 020 3371 2095.
Notes to editors:
- The £1.5 billion is only a proportion of the total value that continues to rise as a result of the Health and Social Care Act. Millions of pounds gained by private companies from NHS contracts with links to Tories are still to be unearthed.
Tories in £1.5 billion NHS sell-off scandal
- Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.