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 Andrew Lansley Andrew Lansley Shadow Secretary of State for Health 11:30 am, 22nd March 2005

So far as I am aware, the only party in this House that proposes to levy charges for NHS treatment is Labour. [Interruption.] It is a question. Let us consider section 150 of the Health and Social Care (Community Health and Standards) Act 2003, which is entitled "Liability to pay NHS charges"—a provision introduced by this Government 18 months ago. Following the consultation started by the Minister of State, Department of Health, Ms Winterton on 24 September, the Government propose to increase from £105 million to £250 million the amount received through charges for personal injury cases. Do the Government propose to proceed with those charges? They legislated for extra NHS charges, and as my hon. Friend Dame Marion Roe rightly said, such charges are up by £500 million. Does the Secretary of State intend to implement his plan, as set out in legislation, to increase charges by another £150 million, or is he going to tell us today that he is abandoning it?