An NHS With Time To Care

Labour Health Policy

Extract from the Labour Party policy summary December 2014

Logo Changing Britain Together

David Cameron promised that under the Tories there would be no topdown NHS reorganisation. He broke that promise. They have wasted £3 billion on an upheaval which puts profits before co-operation and patient care, and ties hospitals up in competition law.
This wasteful and chaotic reorganisation is having a knock-on effect on the thing that matters most: patient care. Waiting lists, already rising, look set to be pushed up even further as budgets are squeezed and more hospitals fall into deficit. There is a crisis in A&E, not just in winter but all year round. Vital treatments are being rationed, giving patients the choice of waiting longer or paying to go private. Millions of people can’t get a GP appointment when they need one.


The National Health Service is the Labour Party’s greatest achievement. We created it, we saved it, and we will always support it. Labour’s vision for our NHS will bring together physical health, mental health and social care into a single service to meet all of a person’s care needs, with a focus on prevention. It is a true One Nation vision: a health and care system shaped around people, not bureaucratic structures or markets.
We will protect and strengthen the NHS, even in an era when money is tight. We will repeal the Government’s Health and Social Care Act, ensuring an NHS based on collaboration and integration, not competition and fragmentation. We will strengthen the NHS for the future and ensure it has time to care with 20,000 more nurses and 8,000 more GPs by 2020, paid for by tackling tax avoidance and introducing a tax on properties worth over £2 million.

• Recruit 20,000 more nurses and 8,000 more GPs paid for by a tax on properties worth £2 million or more.
• Guarantee a GP appointment within 48 hours – and on the same day for those who need it.
• Repeal the Tories’ Health and Social Care Act.
• Integrate health and social care services into a system of “whole-person care”.
• Give mental health the priority it deserves with a new right to access talking therapies enshrined in the NHS Constitution.
• Guarantee that patients will wait no longer than one week for vital cancer tests and results by 2020.
• Ensure that when changes are proposed to local hospital services patients and the public have a seat round the table from the very start, helping design and decide on plans for change.