Naz Shah MP

Labour MP for Bradford West

Crisis in A&E

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Naz Challenges the Government on the A&E crisis, this governments approach is leaving those in need without the services they deserve

'Let me turn now to pharmacies. This Government fail to grasp the fact that cuts to one service will have a direct impact on another. Let me be clear: only two months ago, I stood on the Floor of this House to condemn the proposed 12% cut to community pharmacies, which could mean the closure of 25% of the 42 pharmacies in my Bradford West constituency. That highlights the short-sighted approach taken by this Government. They are attacking all forms of primary healthcare and front-line services on which people rely.'

 

'If the figures are correct, nearly 30% of people who attended A&E services in Bradford royal infirmary over the past month could have been treated elsewhere for minor ailments. Many of them could go to their local pharmacy, through our local ailments scheme, or see their GP. What is the Government’s long-term approach  to these systemic issues if they continue to water down primary care services? All we will see is an increase in the number of visitors unnecessarily attending A&E and an increase in the problems faced by those needing access to services.'

 

'The impact of the reduction in GP services is the same. Only a few months ago, I campaigned with the local community to save Manningham health practice. That was temporarily put on hold, although we still have fears. Thankfully, we managed to prevent that centre from being closed down in the short term. However, I know that others in my constituency are at risk. Many other MPs have GP surgeries in their constituencies that face uncertain futures due to the funding restraints. This paints a picture not only of the underfunding of primary care services, but of a strategy that simply does not work together. Even a simple understanding of healthcare provision would allow us to see that if we decrease NHS services in one sector, there is an impact on the rest of it and an increased pressure on other service providers. But this Government continue to underfund and cut funding to all aspects of frontline services, and they expect the quality of care to remain the same. Where is the long-term planning that will ensure that people get access to the care that they deserve and are entitled to?'

 

'The Government’s strategy is the same when it comes to local government social care funding. The cuts to local social care funding have been dramatic. As many other hon. Members have highlighted, nearly £4.6 billion has been taken out of the social care sector since 2010, mainly through local government funding cuts. My district of Bradford has just had to announce that it will need to find another £8 million in savings from its social care budget. The authority is trying to be innovative and trying to find ways to ensure that there is no effect on frontline care by putting its resources into prevention. For me, the Government still fail to recognise the impact of deprivation on care needs. In one of the four most deprived constituencies, health issues go hand in hand with deprivation. The cuts to local government funding make that even more evident. It is not the work of our exceptional healthcare staff that has caused this crisis. It is the reduction in funding and the short-term strategy of this Government that are responsible. It is time for them to wake up and provide the healthcare provision people deserve.'

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