Ashfield MP demands Government action as NHS slides further into crisis

Gloria De Piero MP
Gloria De Piero MP

It has been a fact of life for too long under this Government that you have to wait longer than you should to be seen at hospital, writes Gloria De Piero.

Under the Tories, the NHS has failed to meet its A&E waiting time target for nearly four years.

In March this year, more than one in five patients was waiting more than four hours to be seen, meaning tens of thousands of people are waiting too long, often in pain and distress.

The picture at local hospitals differs vastly.

A&E at King’s Mill Hospital remains one of the best performing in the country with 92.8 per cent of patients being seen within four hours, although this is still below the 95 per cent target.

Meanwhile, at the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham, just 64.2 per cent of patients are seen within four hours.

For cancer treatment waiting times, the latest figures show that nationally, the situation is the worst on record.

The recent NHS staff survey found 40 per cent of staff have reported feeling unwell due to work-related stress in the last year alone.

There are currently 100,000 vacancies across the NHS in England, meaning wards have to be shut, operations are cancelled and waiting times go up.

It is not surprising that the doctors and nurses are suffering the effects of stress.

The NHS is also now seeing the first sustained fall in GP numbers in the UK for 50 years which is probably why many people struggle to get a GP appointment when they need one.

There are stories of alarming numbers of nurses dying by suicide and ambulance staff leaving their jobs in droves.

Crisis-point is just around the corner unless this Government does something urgently.

There was a debate in Parliament last week on the Government’s plans to renege on a promise to keep free TV licences for over-75s.

Responsibility for the free licences has been passed to the BBC, and the results of its consultation are due out soon.

I would hate to see nearly 7,000 pensioners in Ashfield who received a free licence miss out because of Tory broken promises.