The NHS is the largest employer in Great Britain and the Conservatives’ number one political priority.
Since the inception of the NHS, over sixty years ago, there have been significant social, demographic and technological changes. Because of this, it’s important for health planning to keep pace with our rapidly changing society. Labour have reacted to changing health needs with a lamentable lack of urgency. They have lost all vision and relied on bloating the NHS with bureaucrats, like rain deluging a river forcing it to burst its banks.
Labour’s health legacy will be a litany of failures: billions of pounds of taxpayers’ money squandered on the white elephant NHS IT system; management by targets and tick-boxes that have distracted from patients; policies that tried to dumb-down both training and treatment; cancer survival rates amongst the worst in the developed world and an increase in health inequalities between rich and poor.
Added to that, the latest National Audit Office report highlights that only one hospital in England and Wales can offer full consultant cover in Accident & Emergency. The Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology reported that over sixty per cent of maternity units lack full consultant obstetric cover. Sadly Labour’s love of administration has been at the cost of patient care. We can’t go on like this.
David Cameron has said “we will spend more on the NHS, but we will also improve it so that it is more efficient and responsive to patients. People working in the frontline will actually be able to get on with the job they signed up for, without getting tied up in a web of targets. And we will put more power in the hands of patients by giving them better information about the care they can expect to receive.”
That’s exactly right, and that’s why the Conservative Party’s draft manifesto on health has pledged to cut bureaucrats by a third and put patients at the heart of the NHS. It’s clear that only the Conservatives can remedy the centralised control that has come to constrict our NHS. Only the Conservatives have the vision, leadership and strength of character to bring the change we need.