Midland nurses warned the Government should "ignore us at their peril" yesterday as they joined more than 1,000 other NHS staff members on a protest rally in London.
More than 120 nurses from the region went to the capital to warn Ministers that operations were being postponed, wards closed ,and jobs lost because of cuts in the NHS.
Ann Leedham-Smith, head of the Royal College of Nursing Midland Union branch, said the Government was ignoring the problem and refusing to admit thousands of jobs were being lost across the country.
She said: "If we want to keep nurses working and keep wards open, then the Government has to listen.
"Patricia Hewitt clearly isn't listening but we have got more than 1,000 nurses here - it is huge.
"Most of Birmingham's hospitals, plus Stoke, Worcester and Sandwell are represented here.
"The mood in one way is quite upbeat. In all my years, I have never seen so many nurses come to London on a rally."
Mrs Leedham-Smith said services would suffer as a result of the redundancies across the Midlands but the Government was claiming the job losses would affect agency staff and only a small number of nurses.
"There is no agency staff, and they don't cost that much anyway.
"Nurses are working ten-hour days and what they are saying is enough is enough.
"I think the Government will ignore us at their peril. There are 1,000 nurses in every constituency and we can make a sea change to who is in power and who isn't, so Labour must work harder."
Nurses, midwives, porters, cleaners, cooks and other workers, many wearing their NHS uniforms, went to London to lobby MPs.
Several hundred nurses packed into Westminster Central Hall for a rally to press home their campaign to "keep the NHS working".
Beverly Malone, general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, said the nurses were campaigning not because they were anti-Government but because they were pro-patient.
"We have got student nurses who can't get jobs and we have got nurse educators being shown the door.
"We have got nurses struggling under ever-increasing workloads because agency staff have been cut and vacancies have been frozen.
"We have got specialist nurses at risk of redundancy and we have got operations postponed, wards closed and services cut.
"It is the same dark and depressing picture up and down the country - 13,000 NHS posts designated for elimination in the last six months alone, debts rocketing towards #1 billion and patients suffering as a consequence."
Health Minister Lord Warner said the picture of the NHS painted in the media was not an accurate reflection.
While some compulsory redundancies would take place across the NHS, he said most job cuts would be achieved through the annual turnover of staff, recruitment freezes and a reduction in the use of agency staff.
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