THE revelation that Imperial NHS Trust will have to shed 265 nurses and 49 doctors over the next five years offers a worrying insight into the kind of public spending cuts we can expect following next week's general election.
It comes in the same week that the Institute for Fiscal Studies criticised the three main parties for failing to come clean on their individual plans to cut the public deficit, with the Tories, Labour and Lib
Dems each having announced only a fraction of the cuts required by their budgets.
We should be under no illusion that, whoever wins power or a share of power on May 6, front-line services such as those at Charing Cross, Hammersmith and St Mary's Hospitals will be hit hard in the coming years, as in all other areas of public service.
To claim that the country's dire financial woes can be mostly solved through moderate tax hikes and 'efficiency savings' is disingenuous, and the cuts at Imperial make a mockery of politicians' pledges to protect the NHS.
Anyone who works in the public sector in our borough - or in one of the many private firms contracted by council and government departments - should be mindful that while we may already be clawing our way out of recession, the worst may be yet to come.