Hundreds of people marched through Newcastle today in defence of the NHS.
The demonstrators were opposing what they described as "cuts, closures and privatisation."
They included many frontline health workers in the North East, who warned of increasing pressures and called for extra investment.
Neither the Department of Health and Social Care nor the Conservative Party provided a response to criticisms made today.
The government said recently it understood the NHS is "extremely busy" currently and was allocating an extra £2.8 billion in funding over the next two years.
Actors Denis Lawson and Stockton-born Stephen Tompkinson, who have both been working in Newcastle, were among those who spoke on stage today.
Plans to remove some services from Rothbury Community Hospital and South Tyneside District Hospital have provoked fierce opposition, and are both now likely to be decided on by the Health Secretary.