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Westminster Diary by Harriett Baldwin MP


6th July 2018

This week marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the National Health Service – it is one of our country’s proudest achievements. Our Government is fully committed to supporting the NHS and at this time of celebration, the Prime Minister has announced a long-term funding commitment for meaning that the NHS England budget will rise by an extra £20 billion in real terms – an on average increase of 3.4 per cent. This money will mean improved services, but it is also a commitment to preserving the values of fairness on which the NHS was founded, ensuring it will be there for our children and grandchildren, just as it has been there for us, in the past.

We are only able to make this funding offer because we have managed the public finances responsibly. It is because of our balanced approach: to reduce debt as a share of GDP, to keep taxes as low as possible – and to invest in our public services. So we will stick to our fiscal rules and continue to ensure debt falls, while prioritising our NHS within public spending.

This great news goes hand in hand with wage rises for nurses and health service staff between 6.5 and 29 per cent and firm commitments from the Department of Health to fund £29 million of much needed improvements at Worcestershire Royal Hospital. The building work is due to start soon, meaning extra bed capacity this winter helping to relieve the pressure during periods of peak demand.

My postbag on health matters is, in the main, full of people who want to say thanks to the doctors and nurses who care for us and our loved ones at our GP practices and hospitals including our excellent Community Hospitals in Pershore, Malvern and Tenbury. This funding news is our way, as a Government and as a country, to say thank you and to show our support for our National Health Service.



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Harriett Baldwin
 
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