NHS Trusts

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:32 pm on 29th April 1991.

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Photo of Mr William Waldegrave Mr William Waldegrave , Bristol West 3:32 pm, 29th April 1991

The hospital is part of the national health service, as the hon. Gentleman knows. He has misunderstood what it is proposing, which surprises me, because I know that he has been in touch with the hospital. It is not proposing £12 million-worth of cuts. It has to put its underlying deficit in order, which amounts to about half that figure, and wishes to redirect another £6 million towards growing services, which is different from what the hon. Gentleman said. Among other things, it is saying that it will preserve and perhaps develop the local community aspects of its hospitals.

Indeed it is true that the hospital is overstretched, as are others in London. As anyone who knows anything about the NHS realises, there has been over-provision of total hospital numbers in London for 50 years as the population has moved away. Now we have to fund hospitals in London properly to offer the services needed in London, in addition to the specialties that are more widely needed. That is what Guy's is proposing to do, and that will secure its long-term future rather than going from crisis management to crisis management, which is what has happened for more than 20 years.