According to newspaper reports, Julie Bailey, founder of the so-called patients’ campaign group Cure the NHS (Cure), has left Stafford – supposedly ‘driven out’ by a ‘hate campaign’ orchestrated by the people of the town who are said to hate her for her ‘tireless campaigning’, driven by grief for her mother and others who died at Stafford hospital and her desire, as she has claimed and as she has named her group, to ‘cure’ the NHS:
Ms Bailey has been portrayed as a long-suffering heroine whose ‘Breaks’ cafe near the town centre was shunned by the townspeople, bringing her to the verge of penury. Such is the supposed nobility of her cause. As she claimed in a Daily Mirror interview:
And now she’s broke because her café in the town that used to provide her with a decent living is all but deserted these days – boycotted by locals because: “You don’t take on the town’s biggest employer without paying the price.”
Ms Bailey is now said to be in Portugal on holiday, which already starts to cast doubt on claims that she has been impoverished by a town boycott of her cafe. But there is a far bigger question mark over that claim – and over her entire, supposedly saintly and self-sacrificing, motivation.
A quick search of the internet will reveal the existence of an oddly-named company which has its headquarters at 5b Lichfield Road – the same address as the Breaks Cafe:
The company was founded in March of this year. Its directors include one Mr James Duff – a retired butcher and prominent Cure member – and Ms Julie Bailey, former cook, cafe owner and social care manager.
Ms Bailey claims that her motives are all about altruism and justice. She claims to only want to make the NHS better – even while appearing in the press and on TV at every opportunity to bad-mouth our greatest national institution, and trying to instigate professional sanctions against nurses simply for speaking out on the radio. Odd for someone who claims to support whistleblowers.
She also thinks highly enough of herself to believe that she is the one to ‘cure’ our supposedly ‘sick’ health service. Highly enough to found a limited company named (albeit strangely) after her mission.
But here’s the thing. Limited companies exist for one purpose: to make a profit. If you don’t want to make a profit, you found a ‘CIC’, a Community Interest Company, or one of several other non-profit company types that exist, usually for the purpose of some social good. Or a charity.
You only found a limited company if you plan to make a profit. Limited companies have to file reports, pay accountants’ and other fees, and incur various types of cost. So do CICs etc, but they aim to cover those costs, pay necessary salaries – and do good. Nobody takes money out of CICs in the form of profits – if you want to do that, a limited company is one of the easiest ways of doing it.
Those four words, ‘Cure the Health Limited’, speak volumes. The chief shareholders – in this case almost certainly the directors – plan to make a profit from the activities under the name of ‘Cure the Health’. Does that remind you of anything?
Can there be any doubt that Cure the Health Limited is a corporate vehicle set up to harvest profits from the profile and activities of Cure. Its existing as a limited company, consisting of shares that can be bought and sold, raises chilling possibilities of commercial health interests owning all or part of the company either now or at some point in the future – and so controlling a so-called “patients’ group” to whom the media pay massive (and undue) attention on all matters NHS.
Ms Bailey claims to be driven by grief for her mother’s death, and compassion for the loss of others. Yet she appears to be willing to commercialise that grief – and to profit from it, and from a constant negative campaign in the media against the NHS, while claiming to ‘cure’ it.
That’s not, of course, unique. There’s already a profession that profits from the grief of others.
We call them undertakers.
As those who have kept close watch on Ms Bailey’s activities and pronouncements have long feared, Ms Bailey has ‘come to bury the NHS, not to save it’.
By founding this strange, ominous limited company, one has to ask whether Ms Bailey has tipped her hand – has revealed her real motives and true psychology when it comes to the NHS she claims to be curing.
Kill or cure, indeed. That is the question.