November 11, 2014

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The NHS is one of our greatest achievements but it’s struggling under this government which wasted billions on an unnecessary top-down reorganisation. 

The Tories and Lib Dems passed a piece of legislation called the Health and Social Care Act, which means that NHS services can be privatised. In fact, over 70% of services which have been put out to tender have now been taken over by private companies, meaning money goes to shareholders rather than being spent on patient care.

Normally on Fridays, I am busy in my constituency meeting people or visiting schools but on Friday, November 21, there is a vote in parliament to try to amend the Health and Social Care Act and to stop the privatisation of our NHS. 
I shall be voting in parliament on November 21 to try to save our NHS, along with my Labour colleagues.

The vote on November 21 is important as it will tell the government that they are wrong to allow the privatisation of the NHS but that vote is unlikely to lead to a change of the law due to a lack of parliamentary time. That’s why it is so important that there is a change of government next year if we are to save our NHS. 
Labour will scrap the Health and Social Care Act if we win the election and stop the privatisation but we will do far more than that.

One of the issues that local people regularly talk to me about is their struggle to see a GP. The nurses and doctors that serve our area do a great job but under the Tories one in four people now wait a week or more for a GP appointment.

That’s why the next Labour government will create a £2.5billion-a-year NHS Time to Care Fund to save and transform our health service.

We’ll support 20,000 more nurses, 8,000 more GPs, 5,000 more careworkers and 3,000 more midwives. By appointing these additional staff, our doctors and nurses will have the time they need to care properly for patients.

The Time to Care Fund will not be paid for through more borrowing or by raising taxes on everyday working people. Instead, the money will be raised from a tax on houses worth over £2million, a co-ordinated crackdown against tax avoidance, and by ensuring tobacco companies contribute towards the costs they impose on the NHS.

The NHS is going backwards under this Tory-Lib Dem coalition so there has never been a better or more important time to care about its future. Only Labour can be trusted to protect the NHS and with the Time to Care Fund, we’ll ensure we have a health service fit for the 21st century.

If you back Labour’s plans for the NHS, please write to me at 39 Sefton Lane Industrial Estate, Maghull, L31 8BX or email billestersonmp@gmail.com

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