Labour Parliamentary candidates have urged bosses at a Cornish hospital to rethink privatisation plans, branding them a "false economy".
Deborah Hopkins, who will contest St Austell and Newquay at the general election and Hanna Toms, for Truro and Falmouth, want directors of the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust (RCHT) to reverse plans to switch up to 450 jobs to private companies.
Health chiefs agreed behind closed doors last week to undergo a formal invitation to tender for so-called "hotel services", which include catering, housekeeping, cleaning, portering, waste and switchboard functions.
RCHT chief executive Lezli Boswell said they have agreed to "explore" whether the services could be supplied by an external provider. Ms Boswell said no decision had yet been made.
In a statement, the two would-be MPs said the move was "a cynical attempt to reach their target of changing the ratio of registered nurses from the current 55% of workforce to 65% by 2018".
"Nobody wants to return to the bad old 80s with filthy hospitals and demoralised privately contracted cleaning staff with too much to do and no time to do it," they added.