City-centre GP Premises

Health and Social Care – in the House of Commons at on 11 July 2023.

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Photo of Daisy Cooper Daisy Cooper Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Health and Social Care), Deputy Leader, Liberal Democrats

What assessment he has made of the potential impact of guidance issued by District Valuer Services on the availability of city-centre GP premises.

Photo of Neil O'Brien Neil O'Brien The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

While it is a very long-standing system, we keep the approach to funding for GP premises under review. We have taken action in the primary care recovery plan to improve access to section 106 funds, so that new homes always come with the GP infrastructure that is needed.

Photo of Daisy Cooper Daisy Cooper Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Health and Social Care), Deputy Leader, Liberal Democrats

The Secretary of State and his Ministers will know that I first raised this issue in the Chamber on 6 June this year. Integrated care boards, GPs, and now the medical property sector are all telling me that the Treasury rules are out of date and are a massive block to securing much-needed primary care premises in the right places, particularly in city centres such as St Albans. When I have asked the Department via written parliamentary questions for its assessment of how much of a problem this issue is, the Department has told me that it just does not know. Could the Minister please tell us when he will be speaking to colleagues in the Treasury to resolve this issue, so that we can make sure that GP premises are secured where people need them most?

Photo of Neil O'Brien Neil O'Brien The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

We talk all the time. I am conscious that there are 60% more full-time patient-facing staff in the hon. Lady’s constituency than there were in 2019, which of course puts pressure on premises. The capital allocation for her local ICB between 2022-23 and 2024-25 was £200 million, so the money is there, but I am happy to continue the conversation about how we get the premises in the places where we need them.