The NHS is Britain’s most loved public service and the fairest system of healthcare in the world. Now that our investment and reform have brought waiting lists down, we will create legally enforceable guarantees for all patients. Families need healthcare to be available close to their homes and workplaces, and open when they need it.
The Conservatives would, scrap all of Labour’s guarantees for patients, by getting rid of all “process targets, including our two-week guarantee on cancer referrals, an end to the one-week commitment on cancer diagnosis and an end to the 18 week guarantee on hospital treatment. The Conservatives want to reverse the recent deal with doctors to provide extended GP opening hours in the evenings and at weekends. Now, over three quarters of GP practices offer extended opening hours.
Now that investment and reform have brought waiting lists down in health, we are turning waiting time targets into legally enforceable guarantees for all patients.
- Maximum two week guarantee on cancer referrals with diagnosis within a week. It is estimated that this guarantee will save up to 1500 lives in London.
- Guarantee 2.41 million Londoners aged between 40 and 74 the right to a free health check which could prevent 1,400 strokes and heart attacks in London each year and save over 300 lives.
- Plus set a maximum 18-week wait for hospital treatment, with access to GPs in the evening and at weekends.
The Conservatives say they will scrap all of Labour’s guarantees for patients, by getting rid of all "process targets". That means an end to the two-week guarantee on cancer referrals, an end to the one-week commitment on cancer diagnosis and an end to the 18 week guarantee on hospital treatment.
The Conservatives want to reverse the recent deal with doctors to provide extended GP opening hours in the evenings and at weekends. Now, over three quarters of GP practices offer extended opening hours.
Where Labour has focused on increasing access for patients, the Conservatives have backed the calls of some doctors to go back to setting their own opening hours – even though this would mean many GPs no longer offering the extended hours patients want.
They believe that improvements in the NHS can be driven purely by the market, but scrapping guarantees could lead to waiting times shooting up once again, just as they did in the 1980s and 1990s.
Labour has more than doubled spending on health in real terms since 1997. This has allowed us to treat over 96% of patients diagnosed with cancer within 62 days.
- We have overseen the biggest hospital building programme in the capital’s history, with 29 new hospital schemes and another 2 under construction.
- In 1997, more than 48,000 people were waiting over 26 weeks for an in-patient appointment, now barely anyone (2 people) does.
- There are over 53,000 more NHS staff in London than there were in 1997, with over 3,000 more consultants and 18,000 nurses.
More Tory Threats
The Tories have also hinted that they will scrap the right to free health checks for all those aged between 40 and 74
The Conservatives have chased headlines by supporting high profile but inaccurate campaigns against closures and service reconfigurations.
Their policy would take all decisions over the running of the NHS away from elected ministers and hand them to an unelected NHS board – making it impossible for Conservative ministers to intervene to stop service changes
Labour has clearly set out plans for a national care service, which will end the postcode lottery for care and ensure that users and carers have fair access to the support that they need and the dignity that they deserve
As a starting point, we will offer free personal care at home for Londoners with the highest needs and a cap on the cost of residential care to protect people’s homes and savings.
It is estimated that more than 42,000 people in London will be able to receive free personal care in their homes, and a further 18,000 will be able to access re-enablement care – which will help them recover after traumatic events such as heart attacks or strokes.