NHS Charging

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Health – in the House of Commons at 11:30 am on 22nd March 2005.

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Photo of Edward Garnier Edward Garnier Conservative, Harborough 11:30 am, 22nd March 2005

The Secretary of State said, and I agree with him, that the national health service should be free to all and equally available to all. One of the problems that we have found in my area, which is covered by the Melton, Rutland and Harborough primary care trust, is that it has a deficit of £2.3 million, and it will be asked to take on the health provision for HMP Ashwell and HMP Gartree, which will only add to the burden. How will the Secretary of State prevent my constituents from being further taxed, if not further directly charged, for access to the national health service, when the PCT, and particularly its out-of-hours service, is running at a massive deficit?