NHS Funding

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:31 pm on 9th February 2005.

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Photo of John Reid John Reid Secretary of State, Department of Health, The Secretary of State for Health 12:31 pm, 9th February 2005

Yes, indeed; and I can tell my hon. Friend that Barnsley, for instance, is now closer to target than it was previously. It is just 3.5 per cent. beneath, and a £61 million increase is going in over the two years; that is a 21 per cent. increase for Barnsley. I hope that that will assist in an area where there has been terrible deprivation. I know that there are a series of one-stop primary care centres, which have improved health care in my hon. Friend's area, and there are other developments. For instance, I think that some additional GPs have come into the area recently.

We must never forget that although we have spent a lot of time today talking about the allocation of moneys, which is what this is about, at the end of the day this is about improving patient care, and there is no doubt in my mind that all the signs on the ground now are showing that, month by month, we are getting much better patient care. This morning I was in Newham, where five years ago there was one consultant in accident and emergency; there are now five. Where there were 50 nurses there are now 80. Where they were waiting 10 months for a scan only two years ago, now they are waiting less than a week. That is where this money is going—it is going to the patients, and that is as it should be.