The hon. Lady, with her considerable expertise in this area, is right to bring that particular matter to the attention of the House. We certainly need more provision of the women and men who give that sort of support.
A significant part of a new national stroke plan should be the development of 24/7 access to mechanical thrombectomy for all United Kingdom citizens, no matter where they live. Southend has already shown itself to be both safe and effective. It exceeds the recommended audit standards, its improvement in patient outcome is similar to international trials and, despite a severely ill patient collective, its results exceed the British Association of Stroke Physicians’ quality benchmarks. I want all my constituents to have 24/7 access to the best possible stroke treatment, so I urge the Government to find a way of effectively introducing mechanical thrombectomy to all parts of the United Kingdom. What is the Government’s assessment of the national stroke strategy, and will the Minister update the House on progress with its replacement?
I am not criticising the Government’s provision in any sense but, as with all these things, we could and should do more. We could do better. It is frustrating that a wonderful technique is available but is not available to everyone. Perhaps we can find a few more resources now because that should result in a saving in the long run. Finally, does the Minister agree that this wonderful facility at Southend Hospital is a further good reason for Southend to be declared a city?