We Won't Wait! Join the campaign launch on September 4th

17 August 2021

Throughout the pandemic, we’ve seen just how important our universal, free healthcare system is for all of us. Even during the darkest days of the past year, our National Health Service has been a beacon of hope. 

But now, NHS staff are working flat out without the capacity they need to get through a gigantic backlog. 5.4 million patients in England alone are waiting for treatment right this second.

The government must give our NHS all the funding and extra capacity it needs to care for people urgently and rebuild for the longer term.

September 4th: Save the date! 

On Saturday 4th September, the campaign for NHS funding to tackle waiting lists will officially launch with a rally outside Parliament. We’re building a powerful coalition to make this the mass movement our NHS needs: bringing together campaigners, trade unions, big names, health workers, patients, and YOU!

Save the date and spread the word- we’re standing up together to fight for our NHS when we need it most. 

If you’re based in London or able to travel: see you from 12-1pm, Saturday 4th September - Opposite Old Palace Yard, Parliament, Westminster, SW1A 0AA

If you're not able to make it an action in person, here's how to get involved on September 4th

  1. Take a picture with one of our printable placards and send it to us at info@weownit.org.uk so that we can share it on our social media
  2. You can also take a picture with the placard and do a post with photos on Facebook, Twitter (draft tweet here) and Instagram, tagging @We_ownit. Make sure to tag your MP too, asking them to raise the alarm about waiting lists!
  3. Sign our petition (petition link to come) and share it with family and friends!

What's going on? 

Waiting lists were already too high even before the pandemic. This is because the government has been cutting the vital funding our NHS needs for 10 years. With the additional pressure of responding to Covid, it’s never been more urgent.

Our NHS must be given the resources it needs to provide the care we need.

Right now, if you can afford it, you’re pushed into going private. People are having to take out enormous loans or pay thousands of pounds of their savings for life-saving heart surgery. This goes against everything we love about our NHS and what it stands for. We cannot allow this crisis to be used to create a two tier US-style system.

We know that waiting lists are a political decision, not the fault of our dedicated health workers.

Instead of funding the NHS, the Conservatives are handing £10 billion over to the private sector. They’re also pushing forwards their Corporate Takeover Bill, to hand more control over how NHS money is spent to private companies.

We know that the solution is proper funding, not profiteering private companies and reorganisation. 

So it’s time the government hears us loud and clear: we won’t wait. Join the campaign launch on September 4th!

Your voice is vital 

Over the past week, hundreds of people have submitted personal stories to back the campaign. These stories show the human impact of waiting lists, with so many suffering while waiting for urgently needed care. Some of us have had to make huge financial sacrifices to pay for private treatment or go without. 

Our stories are key to cutting through government spin and calling for the NHS to be properly funded. With millions of people struggling, feeling frustrated and unheard, we are building a platform to ensure these stories are listened to. They’ll be front and centre at the campaign launch.

If you would like to share your experience of waiting for care you need, or the impact of having to resort to private care, leave a comment below.

Local actions taking place on September 4th:

Edinburgh - 12-1pm, Holyrood, EH99 1SP

Skelmersdale - 2-3pm, Nye Bevan Pool, WN8 6LT


Do you believe in public services for people not profit?

Win campaigns for public ownership by subscribing to our mailing list! We'll hold your data in accordance with our privacy policy and send you carefully chosen information about current and future campaigns, projects and appeals. You can unsubscribe at any time.


Jill Green replied on Permalink

I am already a regular supporter

Anthony replied on Permalink

Its about time treatment only now available privately was made available on the NHS, such as most dental care, I'm sick of our two teir health care system. We have all paid national insurance, government has broken its social contract.

Ann replied on Permalink

I agree with Anthony's comments. Even NHS dentistry costs money. The situation is even worse now. I have not seen a dentist for about two and a half years, due to the pandemic. I contacted my local dentist (My Dentist) in May and was told that I would be contacted when my turn came. I have heard nothing since. My partner was persuaded to go to another (My Dentist) dentist, but because he was not registered with this dentist he was charged private rates. I feel that similar situations exist throughout the country.

Vivienne Ward replied on Permalink

This happened to me. Haven't been to dentist for 2 years due to.pandemic and shielding. When I phoned my own dentist I was told I needed to go on a waiting list despite having a broken tooth. I think this is to persuade people to go privately. That was weeks ago and I've heard nothing since

Martin Phillips replied on Permalink

I believe in public services for people not for profit

sukhi replied on Permalink

boris is a rubbish government and deserves to resign as he doesn’t know how to run a country and has since in power has only made wrong decisions .

Marion Morris replied on Permalink

This Government will not stop until they have filled their pockets and run the NHS and the Country into the ground. Keep up the good work xx

Arline Brisbane replied on Permalink

The NHS was set up for everyone in the country and private medicine have no place in NHS. Profit should not be first. Why are the NHS being blamed for the queues of appointments not being done. The government are not paying the the NHS the funds to keep them.

Kevin Young replied on Permalink

I agree with Arline. They are running the Fabulous NHS into the ground. I used private health once and it very nearly killed me I was honestly 24 hrs from death and that was no exaggeration. They have no after care and therein lies the problem. Let’s supp the ones who care.

Peter Ehlers replied on Permalink

I have been waiting for a hernia operation since 27/08/1998

Amanda Midgley replied on Permalink

I have a friend that needs an operation as she has a lot of pain in her knees and she needs an operation

Paula Young replied on Permalink

Waited 5 years till 2016for spinal fusion. Now got more problems, spine and hips, won't do spine till hips are sorted. Been waiting since 2019 for help.

Paula Young replied on Permalink

Waited 5 years till 2016for spinal fusion. Now got more problems, spine and hips, won't do spine till hips are sorted. Been waiting since 2019 for help. Will have to pay as hip wait us 3 years.

Ann-Katrin Volkmann replied on Permalink

I believe that the health system should be accessible for all residents of the UK.

Susan Howard replied on Permalink

We have got save our NHS, everyone should be entitled to treatment they need

Michael Newton replied on Permalink

You cannot trust this Government they have lied too us all the time. The NHS comes first in my book not giving themselves a massive Payrise.


Jean Collin replied on Permalink

I am disabled so cannot attend any demonstration.

Amanda Kaye replied on Permalink

This is disgusting the NHS should NOT be Private and also NOT for Profit! Furthermore, I believe there is an American company namely Centene trying to get their "Foot" in the door which people in the United Kingdom do NOT want as people will need Insurance otherwise you will not get treated, and people in the United Kingdom are entitled to free medical care at the point of care. Also people who come from the European Union and also outside the European Union should be made pay,just like UK residents do when they go on holiday!So it is time to Fight-the-Good-Fight, As the NHS belongs to us and the USA!! ✊

Mick Aves replied on Permalink

Well done Amanda, so well said. We all pay national insurance, is this where the NHS gets its funds from?

Robert Best replied on Permalink

My daughter is a doctor and she is overwhelmed with not enough staff

Valerie Skilling replied on Permalink

My gripe is local GPS have not had face to face with patients since start of pandemic so no wonder hospitals have suffered.

MRS Vivienne Ward replied on Permalink

I think the virtual appointments are necessary in a pandemic. A) to keep our GPS safe and B) to avoid waiting rooms full of sick people cross infecting each other. After a phone consultation our GPS will invite you in for face to face if they need to.see you 9

Sam replied on Permalink

My support goes out to anyone who wants to make a difference, thanks

Amanda Horn replied on Permalink

I haven’t been able to see a doctor regarding ongoing issues with Crohn’s disease since 2019. I have been given telephone appointment which have not happened and I’m in such a desperate state that I have actually contemplated going private although it goes against everything I stand for. Where is our national insurance going if not for our health care?

Cynthia Mee replied on Permalink

Three times in the last few years I’ve had to pay for treatment because the wait was too long and I couldn’t stand the wait any longer.

Elise replied on Permalink

I have been waiting 18 months for a knee operation. Still waiting... who knows how much longer. The people in government aren't there to serve us or look after us; they're clearly in that job to get the most out of it for themselves and their cronies. No kidding.

Adam replied on Permalink

This government is a absolute disgrace Johnson owes his life to these health care workers when he caught Covid19 himself I had a serious throat injury in 2018 I owe them also this government has to go now

Marion Kingsley replied on Permalink

the main problem with a two tier system is that private insurance company employees will have power over life and death playing god with our lives, the thought of that is terrifying i am sick to death that we have to keep fighting the government to not privatise the NHS, this country was missold Brexit saying that 350 mmillion will go to the nhs each week we will build 40 new hospitals the government tell lie after lie, we should be sue the goverment for misselling Brexshit just like the banks missold us PPI it amounts to the same thing we should sue them for billions none of us as have benifited only the rich have got richer. I hate the Tories I wish I was able to donate but I am unable to afford it.

EURYL THOMAS replied on Permalink

We need to stop consultants choosing to put private patience before the NHS ones

roger stones replied on Permalink

I was waiting for treatment, done checks,apart from covid test then got a phone call to go to a private hospital they explained they was helping to keep down the backlog at the Queens N.H.S. Nottm., when i questioned this they replied not to worry it will be the same person you saw there,this begs the question he/she cannot be in both places at the same time.Since the op, I,ve been seen by the same guy at Queens for the follow up also another appointment in Sept. Ramsey Health was the private hospital Look it up read all about them, like all private health they pick&choose this looks straight looks straight forwards no problems we will pick it up.Profit for the share holders.

Sue Sanders replied on Permalink

No one should profit from ill health it is obscene Talk of saving the NHS from the tories was a lie unless they meant saving it from us and attempting to give it to their cronies

Mark Richard Adams replied on Permalink

I have been waiting for surgery since January 2020.

I understand that my surgery may not be of the highest priority but this does not excuse the way that the government has treated the NHS.

bernadette elliott replied on Permalink

Unfortunately we already have a 2 tiered system- private or NHS the same surgeons and doctors doing both

Waiting lists in rheumatology have been up to 2 years long before the

covid pandemic I don't really know how private care can be avoided now

Stuart Sharples replied on Permalink

Cant get dental treatment on NHS paid NI all my working life of 45 years why should I have to go private ?

Barry Machin replied on Permalink

I cant wait for our NHS Doctors get back in our surgeries so that we can see them face to face. I believe the campaign should be for people not profit

Noel Walker replied on Permalink

I believe in public services for people not profit.

Rosie Demetriou replied on Permalink

I had to retire from the NHS due to ill health 5 years ago.

Now as a frequent patient , I am horrified to see what tt has become.

“A service for profit”.

Pat Skinner replied on Permalink

NHS - for the people, no matter colour, nationality or religion.

People deserve the best treatment available.

We have dedicated, highly trained staff working in our hospitals, who need to be supported by the government with new equipment, supplies and salaries linked to the cost of living.

Perhaps the Members of Parliament could have an in-depth enquiry to ascertain if they are ‘value for money’?

Ofcourse, there are the ‘shady dealings’ i.e. the disgrace of the PPE contracts where the ‘old boys network’ comes into play.

The Health Service is fundamental to our lives and envied around the world. A national treasure which should be guarded as such.

Karv J replied on Permalink

Totally agree Pat, and I love the final statement on your response ...

The Health Service is fundamental to our lives and envied around the world. A national treasure which should be guarded as such!

Anonymous replied on Permalink

People FIRST - NOT profit!!

Sheila Magee replied on Permalink

People 1st NOT profit for future generations!

Yvonne Wilson replied on Permalink

My family has so much to thank the NHS for and it makes me angry that this Government sees privatisation of the NHS an opportunity for their Tory chums to make a lot of money. Serco took over health care in Suffolk and it failed. Serco handed back the contact because they couldn’t make any money. The same is now happening with GP surgeries. They are gradually being privatised and if they don’t make a profit, they are closed down. NHS dental is chronically underfunded and so many people are forced to pay for dental care, which is expensive. This government doesn’t care about health and welfare of people in this country.

Shohna replied on Permalink

I’ve been supporting WeOwnIt and the Good Law Project for some time now.

My sister has just moved back to U.K. after working in US healthcare for nearly 30yrs.

We do not want the horror of being refused hospital treatment because we can’t afford to pay a private health plan - health plans, that never cover all the care you’ll need I might add!

We do not want to revert our society back to a point where families have to decide if they pay to see a dr or if they pay their house/food bills.

Peter replied on Permalink

My wife had a prominent facial growth - upsetting her - not going out etc - Called "Cosmetic" and not allowed on NHS now. Had she become depressed , needed drugs -anti-depressants, or even mental health support and care this is of course available! Saw a TV programme where the GP was able to excise a similar growth - so that trust had allowed it! So its a post code lottery. had to go private down here in the South - Ok I could afford it but it wasn't "cosmetic" - it was causing serious depression! Just like dentistry - its not on the NHS - unless you are on benefits! £282.80 for a tooth to have a crown - or loose it as I am told its been filled too many times ? Referred to Care UK - Now laughably called Practice Plus Group for an extraction on the NHS - but I am paying 282.80 !!! Not life threatening I know but the NHS will go the way of dentistry unless we fight harder for the NHS and bring it all back under public control!

judith irene brown replied on Permalink

For the first time in 82 years of life I am going to a Private Dentist because there are NO Dentists accepting new NHS patients in Bristol.

Jane Freeland replied on Permalink

My dad was a dentist - dyed in the wool, true blue conservative, but he couldn't sign up quick enough to join NHS dentistry service in 1948. We lived in the Yorkshire coalfield area, and it broke his heat to see young men and women demand full dentures as soon as a filling appeared, because they thought it would be cheaper in the end than keeping on having fillings. He loved being able to do 'conservative' work for everyone, and it would break his heart again to see what the situation is today - and to see the state of his daugher's teeth as result.

Sarah Williams replied on Permalink

My husband needs a hip replacement and was put on the local waiting list in March 2019, just as the first lockdown started, and told a local private hospital would be doing the surgery due to NHS hospitals dealing with Covid patients. The NHS were paying them to take on the elective surgery list. He has been on the list for 18 months now. Whilst we are grateful that his condition is not life threatening, during this time his condition has deteriorated significantly and he is on several different painkillers, and has recently suffered badly with a very painful back muscle spasm, requiring yet more pain relief. This week he had an incident when he fell and was unable to get up on his own as his muscles aren't strong enough. I managed to help him up eventually, but he was quite traumatised by the experience, as was I. We wonder how much longer he has to wait, but there's no information on that for anyone on these lists. GP support has been helpful, but there's nothing they can do except try to help you manage pain. It's all very worrying. He did have a pre-op consultation at the private hospital concerned in March this year, but was told it's unlikely he'd hear about a proposed date for the op before this September. We know we're in a better situation than some, but it's a very worrying wait for anything positive, and my husband's quality of life is really starting to be negatively impacted.

DR G A RICHMOND replied on Permalink

I am a retired GP having worked all my life in the NHS. The Labour party set up the NHS as a free service and that is the way it should remain. I have no objection to a simple 'item of service' charge on prescriptions for those who are in work, as long as this does not exceed the cost of the item prescribed. General Practice is wonderful. G.P's gradually get to know their patients and can often advise patients out of hours on the basis of their knowledge and mutual respect. The NHS is envied throughout the world. It is a system that that gives a free service based on the individuals need. Once lost it will never be possible to reintroduce it. It should be treasured by all, both rich and poor. No-one knows when an emergency such as a stroke or heart attack may occur. THE NHS IS OUR 'SAFETY NET' - there to act ON OUR BEHALF, when the unexpected happens.

Jaz Freeman replied on Permalink

It's not just funding the NHS needs but also total re-organisation! Get rid of all the managers that squander the money the NHS does get and change woefully adequate and out-of-date procurement procedures that also cripple the NHS finances. The current system is choking it to death!

Bruce Barnes replied on Permalink

A word of warning to those considering going Private: the factors that have led to its growth bring with it the failings of the NHS-don't expect your cheque book/visa card to bring you the opportunity for quality time with your consultant, the private conveyor belt is as relentless. Be aware too that within the major corporate providers, there are consultants who do not subscribe to the organisation's aims but continue to work as if they were still in private practice. Do your research thoroughly before going down this road-

David Bailey replied on Permalink

We must rid ourselves of this tyrannical government.

Elaine Pratley replied on Permalink

We need to preserve our health service ,we can't go back to a time when parents could not afford to take children to a GP.We should not let private companies profit from health provisions

DIANE CORBIN replied on Permalink


Jan Baldwin replied on Permalink

I have worked in the NHS and in the USA medical system. Our medical care is as good as and in many cases much better than that in the US and is provided at half the cost. The conservative governments have been cutting NHS funding and reducing service allowing insidious private profiteering to be made from the shortfalls.

Jo Hammond replied on Permalink

I agree with all the sentiments shouted above.So much is already privatised it is depressing to think where to start but telling apathetic people to vote for socialism and not the current LP would be a good move.The Lib Dems and Conservatives don't understand how many working and retired people are suffering.What's more they don't care.We need a society that puts people before profit and spending £30 billion or is it trillion? on weapons.I have been waiting 2 months for an appointment in a dermatology unit.Could end up being cancerous.We need preventative medicine by doctors who know family's history.Cuba is a good example but owing to the US blockade increased by 243 examples by Trump they are suffering from lack of medicines .Most countries import medicines of some sort.Cuba has developed its own Covid Vaccine out of necessity.

Mr T j Jeffery replied on Permalink

Where I live in Kettering Northamptonshire, not one surgery is fit for purpose and none of them can be classed as serving the community, and I'm talking pre-covid. It is not the fault of the NHS but of successive governments who use it as a political football. It has now become a national disgrace. Whatever you do, don't become Ill, or you'll probably die through a lack of due care and attention.

Sidney Smith replied on Permalink

My complaint is local GPS have not had a face to face with patients since start of pandemic my yearly blood test C O P D checks Doppler checks on legs having had ulcers told no longer necessary I have been admitted twice in last 5 years first time hospital doctors etc and after care was superb

2 ND time this year told by doctor which saw me yes actually saw me if condition deteriorates phone 999 this was in the end a 999 job etc spent 15 days in hospital and discharged and told to see my own doctor which never happened was all carried over phone stoma nurse at hospital was more helpful in the end i fear for us all the way things are going its a total joke as is Boris and his cronies NHS is for people not profit when will this government listen and learn by there mistakes on it goes we will finish up with no nurses hospital staff

t's not just funding the NHS needs but also total re-organisation! Get rid of all the managers that squander the money the NHS does get and change woefully adequate and out-of-date procurement procedures that also cripple the NHS finances. The current system is choking it to death!

Linda Bache replied on Permalink

We need to get rid of this lying cabal before our NHS is completely destroyed!

Mick Aves replied on Permalink

Why pay six figure sums to Chief Executive and there many administrators. Matron did a wonderful job, all on her own. Chief Executives are only Clerks.

Michael Greenwood replied on Permalink

Absolutely disgusting you can't get treatment on the NHS, after paying national insurance all our lives,

david honeybell replied on Permalink

Our NHS is like a lifeboat, battling through rough and stormy seas.It will launch to save the rich or poor, young or old. It must not be allowed to be privatised. It must be kept to serve everyone, not only the ones who can afford to pay or have the right insurance cover.

Wendy Nowak replied on Permalink

I'm T2 diabetic on insulin. I'd be dead without the NHS. There are many like me who rely on meds to stay healthy and alive who couldn't afford to pay private fees for our medication which we now get for free. We cannot allow anyone to die because they can't afford insulin, or any other essential medication, as is the case in the US. We don't want a US healthcare system in the UK under ANY circumstances. It's bad enough being threatened with shortages of food when one is already on a restricted diet. I'm terrified!!!

Lynne Vann replied on Permalink

Nye Bevan<s life mission was the provision of an NHS to provide free healthcare ' FROM THE CRADLE TO THE GRAVE'.We cannot let it be privatised.

Add new comment

Copy link