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Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:42 pm on 16th March 2020.

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Photo of Edward Argar Edward Argar Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care) 3:42 pm, 16th March 2020

The Office for Budget Responsibility is independent of the Government and sets out its opinions as it sees fit. We are committed to the hospital building programme. If the hon. Gentleman waits a moment, I will come to the detail of that capital spending.

The Budget increases my Department’s capital budget by £1 billion in 2020-21. That will allow trusts to continue investing in vital refurbishment and maintenance. Of course, we are funding the start of work on 40 new hospitals and the 20 hospital upgrades that are already under way. The work to plan and design those 40 new hospitals has already begun.