MPs write to May to demand parliamentary commission on NHS funding

Posted On: 
26th March 2018

The chairs of 21 select committees have signed a letter to Theresa May calling for an "urgent" parliamentary commission on health spending. 

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The MPs warn of a "serious decline in services" unless prompt action is taken by ministers.

“We call on the government to act with urgency and to take a whole system approach to the funding of the NHS, social care and public health," said Health committee chair Sarah Wollaston. 

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"On behalf of all those who rely on services, we need to break down the political barriers and to agree a way forward.”

As well as the committee chairs, the signatories include former Conservative ministers Nick Boles, Oliver Letwin and Anna Soubry, as well as Sir Nick MacPherson, the former permanent secretary at the Treasury.

The letter says a commission could gather evidence and report to the Government by Easter next year.

But Shadow Health Secretary Jon Ashworth said there was no need for a commission, arguing that the Government should simply decide to invest more in the NHS.

“A government could decide to make the tough decisions to fully fund the NHS if it had the political will to do so,” he said.

“Gordon Brown more than trebled the NHS budget in cash terms when we had a Labour government. We didn’t need a parliamentary talking shop to come up with that.”