Labour MP Bill Esterson slams Tory-Lib Dem Government for shocki

Bill Esterson

Sefton Central Labour MP Bill Esterson has criticised the Government for cutting nurses and putting patients' lives at risk as figures show that major A&E units across Merseyside are struggling and have consistently missed their waiting times targets over the last six months.

Staffing shortages across the NHS have left A&E departments over-stretched and under severe pressure, with reports of ambulances queuing outside and patients left on trolleys for hours on end.

The North West has lost 1,105 nurses since May 2010 and data published by the new NHS England body shows that the target of 95 per cent of patients being seen within four hours has been missed by the A&E unit at Southport in 25 of the last 26 weeks, with a total of 2,976 people having to wait more than four hours before being seen. 

At Aintree Hosptial the figures are 14 weeks and 2,795 people waiting more than four hours.

Bill Esterson at Aintree HospitalBill Esterson, Labour MP for Sefton Central, said: "A&E units serving people in Sefton Central are struggling in a way not seen since the bad old days of the mid-1990s.

"David Cameron promised the NHS would be safe on his watch but instead his Government has hemorrhaged thousands of nurses and did nothing whilst A&Es struggled through the winter.

"It's shocking that the North West has lost 1,105 nurses over the last three years and it is patients who are suffering as the missed targets at Southport and at Aintree hospitals demonstrate. 

"Patients should not be subjected to poor care because of Ministers' failings.  The Tories and the Lib Dems in Sefton have failed the people of this area because they have supported a government that has spent billions on a top-down re-organisation of the NHS and taken money away from patient care. 

"Now those same Tories and Lib Dems are hell bent on opening up the NHS to privatisation as hospitals and are forced to put their services out to tender. All of which means money being spent on bureaucracy and on private companies with patient care being left till last. 

"The NHS in Sefton Central belongs to the people of these communities not to private companies who are more interested in making money than in delivering the best health care. The Tories and Lib Dems should end this move to bring in private companies and go back to supporting our National Health Service. 

"The Government must devise an urgent plan to bring all A&Es up to the required standard and ensure there are enough staff on the ground across the NHS to provide the safe care we need."


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