Orders of the Day — Public Services (East Midlands)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 10:03 pm on 29th January 1997.

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Photo of Graham Allen Graham Allen Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) 10:03 pm, 29th January 1997

Thanks to the campaigning of, in particular, my hon. Friend the Member for Nottingham, East, but also that of other hon. Members in the Nottingham area, even the Secretary of State had to admit in February that health services in Nottingham were underfunded by about £9 million, and were receiving considerably less than the Government's own figures demanded to meet the needs of Nottingham people. As my hon. Friend rightly pointed out, that has led to the postponement of so-called routine, non-emergency operations in our community medical centre in Nottingham for the remainder of the financial year. The Government must propose a way of ending the shortfall.

Again, we are not asking for money that people say we should not receive; we are asking for money that, according to the Government's own figures, local hospitals should receive. I am sure that my hon. Friends who are present could repeat that story throughout the region. Chesterfield and North Derbyshire Royal hospital has suffered a cut of £1·1 million from a budget of £59 million; two and a half wards and two operating theatres have been closed, and capital schemes have been deferred. Behind those statistics are real cases: real people need treatment, and are not receiving it.

It is possible to give similar examples in all policy areas—transport, European funds and education, which I know concerns certain hon. Members.