Simon Steven, Chief Executive of NHS England is a hypocrite

Simon Steven, Chief Executive of NHS England is a hypocrite

 On the 22nd May 2016 whilst discussing Brexit on the Andrew Marr show Simon Stevens, the former Labour councillor for Brixton, in the London Borough of Lambeth, the Chief Executive of NHS England (who is reported to being paid over £200,000 a year) told Andrew Marr that leaving the EU would be devastating for the NHS. In expressing such a divisive political view he has forfeited all claims to be politically neutral and has done so expressly in his role as Chief Executive of England NHS.

Should a Chief Executive of the NHS be telling people how to vote in the EU? What rights in this debate does Simon Steven have as an unelected, politically unaccountable official?  Wouldn’t it be better if he concentrated on doing his job?


Let’s take a closer look at Simon Steven’s comments in an attempt to show how truly politically biased his openly expressed views were on the Andrew Marr show.

Mr Steven’s claimed that the NHS needed immigrant workers to survive


Opposing view

Currently there are over 1.5 million people unemployed in the UK and it isn’t rocket science to work out that many of those individuals could be trained to become nurses and health workers.

Although there are numerous vacancies for nursing posts across the England that remain unfilled  reports claim this is down to short-sighted workforce planning which have seen training posts cut instead of increased in the past. There are also a reported 80,000 students across Britain being told they can’t train as nurses, one reason for this is because it is cheaper to recruit abroad. Simon Steven failed to mention that ‘Leaving’ the EU will actually help our workforce gain jobs and will ensure that local people will be trained for local jobs.


He repeated Mark Carney’s, the Governor of the Bank Of England, words that a recession ‘might’ occur if we leave the EU and then the NHS will suffer due to this UK recession.


Opposing view

It needs to be established first, that Simon Steven is only the Chief Executive for NHS England he does not have any control over the NHS in Scotland and Wales. The NHS in Scotland and Wales, due to their national devolutions, now have a very different health care systems which are more protected than the “marketized” English NHS.

However, putting that aside Mark Carney has been openly criticised for his view which is essentially a big business and international Banker’s view.

Simon Steven didn’t mention that recently Lord Stuart Rose, the former Chairman of Marks and Spencer and now the chairman of ‘Britain Stronger in Europe’ admitted that workers’ wages would rise after Brexit.  Lord Rose also added that high immigration which lowers wages was an integral part of staying in the EU. So the workers in the NHS on the lower bands of pay could expect ‘that leaving the EU would improve their salaries’. Maybe Simon Steven had a motive for wanting to remain in the EU? From his perspective, lower salaries across the English NHS may be good?!

Simon Steven also stated that he did not accept the 10 Billion pound saving from the EU would go to the NHS.

Opposing view

Simon Steven stated the complete opposite to Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and Lord Owen (to mention a few names) and basically called them liars. How taxes are allocated is not down to a non-elected officials and Ex-Presidents of the private health care “provider” called ‘UnitedHealth Europe’ (which lobbies for TTIP!). His role is to implement the policies of democratically elected politicians and who may well spend the money saved from ‘Leaving the EU’ on the NHS.

Lord Owen has gone further and stated that being a member of the EU is destroying the NHS in England. He mentioned that the NHS would be freed from any competition-and-market-led involvement from the European Commission, including a proposed transatlantic free trade deal between the EU and the US. However Simon Steven failed to mention his EU connections and his past private sector involvement.

Stephen Morris, General Secretary of the Workers of England Union  stated ‘it is not the job of an NHS Executive to misuse his position to influence the debate over the EU.  Simon Stevens is a hypocrite because he has used his NHS remit to express a biased political view. When others, working for NHS England, who merely express a political view contrary to his, outside of their work are sacked by NHS England.


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