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Derek Twigg, MP for Halton

Working Hard for Widnes, Runcorn & Hale

Derek attacks Cameron's NHS plans at cost of over £23 million in Halton

05 Dec 2011

Labour has today revealed the hidden cost of the Government's wasteful NHS reorganisation in Halton & St Helens.  Derek is appalled that new guidelines will force the local NHS to put aside £23,153,274 from their budget this year and next to pay for a costly NHS restructure that David Cameron had repeteadly ruled out.

Derek said:

"These shocking new figures show the Government's reorganisation is costing the NHS even more than we first feared.  It is scandalous that they are telling our local NHS to hold back millions of pounds for their own reckless plans whilst thousands of nursing jobs are being axed.

Halton and St Helens NHS has already seen a staggering 175% increase in the number of patients waiting longer than 18 weeks of treatment since Cameron became Prime Minister.

Before his plans are even fully through Parliament, David Cameron's reorganisation is hitting the NHS hard and costs are now topping £3.4 billion across the country for the first time. Spending this amount on an unecessary reorganisation is totally unjustifiable when every single penny should be focused on maintaining standards of care.

At the election, Cameron ruled out top-down NHS reorganisations. But only weeks after entering Number 10, he ripped up his own promise and ordered the biggest and most dangerous upheaval of the NHS since it was established by Labour after the Second World War.  

The financial request is buried in the Government's new 'NHS Operating Framework' document and takes the nationwide cost of the NHS reorganisation above previous estimates of £2-3 billion, with Primary Care Trusts now holding back £3.44 billion over two years."

Last Thursday evening leading doctors from the British Medical Association voted to call for an immediate halt to the Government's costly and controversial Health Bill.

Derek added:

"The people of Halton did not vote for it and our doctors, nurses and patients have already expressed huge concern at the plans.  Yet Cameron is ploughing on with his Health Bill, ignoring public and professional opinion.  The time has come for him to listen, put the NHS first and drop his dangerous Bill."

Labour is running a major national drive to unite the country in a call on the Government to drop its unwanted Health Bill and people are being urged to add their name to the online petition by Dr Kailash Chand at www.epetitions.direct.gov.uk

Labour's Health Team, led by Shadow Health Secretary and North West MP Andy Burnham, will be visiting the region this Thursday 8th December, and are visiting every English region, work-shadowing NHS staff and mobilising support for the campaign.

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