Friday 10 February 2017 / 9:49 AM 2017 Press Archive / The Latest from Labour

Hollow words from Jeremy Hunt as the NHS is suffering from the biggest financial squeeze in history – Ashworth

Jonathan Ashworth, Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary,
commenting on reports that Jeremy Hunt said the problems facing some parts of
NHS England are ‘completely unacceptable’, said:

“These are hollow words from the Secretary of State
this morning. On his watch the NHS is suffering from the biggest financial
squeeze in history and social care is at tipping point. Jeremy Hunt appears to
be finally waking up to the scale of the crisis but he must now accept
responsibility. Instead he offers just hand wringing but no solutions. 

“This week we have seen more and more statistics
revealing that patients are waiting longer, and suffering longer in discomfort.

“Government
advisor Lord Carter has extraordinarily called NHS conditions ‘warlike’ and now
Sir Robert Francis says there is an ‘existential crisis’ for the health service
warning that another Mid Staffs is ‘inevitable.’

“By
making such stark warnings Sir Robert Francis blows apart Jeremy Hunt’s
rhetoric on putting patient safety first.

“The
Prime Minister can’t just put her head in the sand and ignore these astounding
warnings. This is clearly not just a ‘small number of incidents’ as she glibly
suggested.

“The Government’s mismanagement of the NHS is causing
chaos and misery for patients. We
can’t go on like this. They need to listen to the experts and explain
fully in the Budget in a few weeks time how they will put the
NHS and social care on sustainable footing. NHS patients and their families
should never be put through a winter like this again.

Ends