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Three pillars of Labour’s plan to improve, protect and nurture the NHS for generations to come

Mr Miliband will set out the three pillars of Labour’s plan to improve, protect and nurture the NHS for generations to come.

“1. Make the NHS a service for mental health, physical health and care for the elderly

“Our plan for the long-term of the NHS starts by making sure that physical health, mental health and social care – services which have stood apart for too long - work together. Just think of the difference it could make. If a simple grab rail is placed in someone’s hall at home, that can stop a fall that could lead to that person breaking a bone, keeping them out of hospital, saving them the pain and the suffering, and saving the NHS thousands of pounds.

“2. Make the NHS a preventive service not just a reactive service, by investing in care where people live.

“I can announce the next Labour government will put in place a new set of standards: a same-day consultation with your GP surgery with a guarantee of a GP appointment if you need it that day, a GP appointment guaranteed for all within 48 hours, and the right to book further ahead with the GP of your choice if your priority is to plan ahead or to see your preferred doctor. This will be better for patients, because they have better access to their GP surgery; better for the NHS, because it will save money currently spent in A&E; and better for Britain, because it is the kind of health service we need.

“3. Put the principles of cooperation and integration, not competition and privatisation, back at the heart of the health service.

“We will restore the fundamental values of the NHS, end David Cameron’s dogmatic obsession with competition and privatisation, and reduce the huge costs that have come about because of it. Private companies can sometimes help bring down waiting lists or provide specialist services that the NHS can’t. But this government thinks competition and privatization should be at the core of the way the NHS works. We’ll go back to the right principles, to the right values. We’ll clamp down on the competition lawyers, bogging down the NHS and distracting from patient need - and we’ll put £100 million of the savings these changes make straight back into improving GP care.”

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