Monday, 2 June 2014

A guaranteed appointment with a GP within 48 hours under the next Labour government

Local patients would be guaranteed an appointment with a GP within 48 hours under the next Labour government. Under this Government, an issue which has exercised people in Haslingden and Hyndburn above most others has been the closure threats to our local GP and walk-in services at Accrington Victoria Hospital.

As with the everyone I have spoken to locally about this, I want to see more provision and more services provided in a convenient and patient-centred way. As part of Labour’s plans to improve services for patients and ease pressure on local hospitals, I am fully behind Labour’s new guarantee for patients to be able to see a GP within 48 hours or on the same day if they need to be seen quickly.

GP surgeries across the country will be given an extra £100 million a year to achieve this massive improvement in standards - enough to pay for an additional three million GP appointments every year. It will also ease the pressure across the NHS and could save millions of pounds by reducing the number of patients going to A&E departments.

New figures showed that the proportion of patients getting a GP appointment in 48 hours has fallen from 80 per cent under the last Labour government to just 40 per cent under David Cameron. Under the Tory-led Government a quarter of people now cannot get an appointment with a GP in the same week, adding to the pressure on A&E departments. This simply cannot continue.

People in Haslingden and Hyndburn are fed up of David Cameron’s broken promises to protect the NHS. It just goes to show that the Tories can’t be trusted with our National Health Service.