NHS patients to get appointment with GP in 48 hours: Labour promises
Labour has pledged and guaranteed NHS patients, a GP appointment within 48 hours.
The party Leader, Ed Miliband has said that there would be a “same day consultation” for those with the ‘most urgent” problems.
Mr Miliband said the £100m funding for the pledge would come from savings made elsewhere in the NHS.
The Conservatives called Labour’s plan “unfunded” and “pie-in-the-sky” and said it would lead to more taxation.
Speaking on a visit to a hospital in Crewe, Cheshire, Mr.Miliband said: “What we’re promising is that everybody should get a same-day consultation with their GP surgery and, if they’ve got an urgent situation, see a GP – and then a guaranteed appointment within 48 hours.
“And we’re going to pay for this by getting rid of much of the spending on bureaucracy and competition which is increasingly happening in the National Health Service.
“That will save £100m, which we will put in to up to three million extra GP appointments. That will make a real difference to GPs.”
The cost which is claimed to cost £100 million would actually cost 30 times more than the party claims, (ie) £3 billion, doctors say.
It is not anywhere near enough to give any sort of guarantee,” said Maureen Baker, chairman of the Royal College of General Practitioners.
“It’s around £10,000 per practice. That’s a welcome start. It certainly won’t go anywhere near employing more nurses, more GPs.”
Providing a “proper general practice service” would mean increasing the GPs’ share of the NHS budget from 8 per cent to 11 per cent, at a cost of £3 billion, said Dr Baker.
Mr.Miliband has also promised a freeze on the energy prices, break up the major banks and control rent increases.
– Sharanya Bharathwaj