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Lib Dems Call For Emergency Health Funding

March 24, 2017 9:49 PM
Originally published by York Liberal Democrats

Cllr Carol Runciman and the Liberal Democrats have called for emergency funding to keep health services from the brink of collapse.
The Liberal Democrats passed a motion at their recent spring conference in York calling for an injection of emergency funding - particularly focused on social care and mental health services.

The finances of the Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group paint a bleak picture locally, with a projected deficit of over £50m by 2019. Cllr Runciman, Liberal Democrat Executive Member for Health and Adult Social Care, has raised concerns about cuts the CCG is planning in areas such as hospital care, elective orthopaedics, and continuing healthcare in an effort to make the books balance.

Cllr Runciman visited York Hospital with Norman Lamb MP, Lib Dem Parliamentary Spokesperson on Health, and Tim Farron MP, Leader of the Lib Dems, to hear about the pressures the NHS is facing. Norman Lamb is calling for a 1p income tax rise to give the NHS a £4.6bn boost.

Cllr Carol Runciman meets hardworking NHS staff with Party Leader, Tim Farron, and Shadow Secretary of State for Health, Norman Lamb.

The conference motion also called for any EU citizen working in the NHS and care services to be guaranteed the right to continue to live and work in the UK after Brexit. Nationally there are 59,000 EU citizens working in the NHS. In York, the Chief Executive of the Hospital Trust warned last year that Brexit had already cast uncertainty over NHS recruitment. The Trust employs more than 250 employees from EU member countries.

Cllr Carol Runciman, Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Health, commented:

"York's health services are already stretched, and while the CCG's deficit continues to rise York residents will have fears about how cuts will impact their local NHS. Mental health and social care services in particular need emergency funding to keep them from breaking point."

"The government also needs to make clear that the vital work of EU citizens in our NHS will still be welcome after Brexit. Services could struggle to cope if significant numbers of doctors, nurses and NHS staff from the EU left. There are a significant number of EU nationals working in health and care services in York, and I fear that a hard Brexit will only worsen what is already a growing crisis."

Cllr Carol Runciman meets hardworking NHS staff with Party Leader, Tim Farron, and Shadow Secretary of State for Health, Norman Lamb.