The Prime Minister has today announced major reforms to the social care sector and additional funding for the NHS backlog, alongside a new Health and Social Care levy to fund it.
Lucy Allan MP has issued a statement in support of the reforms below:
"I welcome the announcement by the Prime Minister that NHS and social care will now receive a massive increase in funding to deal with the backlog caused by the pandemic and to increase capacity going forward. This is a huge challenge and an absolute priority. The Prime Minister is right to tackle this problem head on. This will be paid for through a 1.25% increase in National Insurance, known as the Health and Social Care levy.
People fully understand the need for an additional contribution to health and social care at this time and they want to see everyone, across the UK makes a contribution, including pensioners who are working and the businesses that received taxpayer support during the lockdown.
It has been clear for many years that the UK needs a long-term solution to social care problems and the Prime Minister has made a bold, much needed move to address this. The Government will opt for a rise across a broad tax base to the raise the significant amount of money needed. It is crucial that we do not get into a cycle of tweaking certain taxes that most people do not pay. Only an ambitious plan like that announced today will future proof the health and care system.
We must of course ensure that this money is well spent and that waste and bureaucracy is tackled. If my constituents are to see a tax increase they must see normal services resume, they must be able to access GP services, they must have access to accident and emergency care and they must see waiting lists and waiting times fall. Improvements are not just about extra cash. In Telford this is particularly pertinent as we see our local health board looking for even more cash for their proposal to move services to Shrewsbury. We also the have the local problem with Teldoc services where phone access is often not achievable, never mind a GP appointment on the telephone or otherwise.
I am believe that a low tax economy incentivises work, but I also believe in fiscal responsibility. We must ensure that tax is fair and spent on the issues that matter most to people– such as the NHS and social care. Crucially, under these new plans, the more people earn the more they will pay via the Health and Social Care levy.
The Prime Minister has acknowledged that the rise in national insurance will break a manifesto commitment, although I think my constituents will understand that nobody could have foreseen the pandemic or its impacts on our economy and the health and care services.
From my discussions with residents most people support a small rise in tax to address the backlog in the NHS and to increase capacity of the health service by 10%. Health and social care is the number one issue in Telford. It is worth noting that the Labour Party, which has spent the last decade arguing for massive increases in funding for the health service, far above the generous billions injected by successive Conservative Governments, have now decided that to oppose increasing tax to pay for our health and social care needs.”