Alex defends NHS against Tory plans

Local MP Alex Cunningham has written to the Chief Executive of North Tees PCT in light of new figures on the funding shortfall facing the NHS in England which have prompted fears that patients in Stockton North will start to see local health services go backwards.

With the NHS already showing signs of strain, a combination of inflation forecasts and the ‘double counting’ of social care funding means the NHS in England is set to see a £1.2 billion shortfall in the next financial year.

During yesterday’s debate in the House of Commons on the Health and Social Care Bill, Alex argued against the Tory-led Government’s plans for reform of the NHS which will put different parts of the Health Service in competition with one another, saying it would “lead to fragmented and disjointed pathways of care and undermine innovation and sharing of best practice.”

Alex said today:

“Before the General Election David Cameron promised to protect the NHS but this shortfall in funding will add pressure on our local health service. This is yet another broken promise from the Prime Minister.”

“I am anxious about what this real-terms cut will mean for our area, and have written to the Chief Executive of North Tees PCT asking for urgent answers on the impact this could have on our local NHS, including patient care and frontline jobs”.

Figures published by the Government’s own Office of Budget Responsibility have revealed that forecast inflation of 2.5% for next year will outweigh the previously proposed 2.0% increase in health spending for the NHS England, leading to a £0.5 billion cut.