Theresa May to outline extra '£384 million a week' NHS funding

Monday, June 18, 2018

Theresa May is using her experience of witnessing the aftermath of the Manchester terror attack to make the case for increased NHS funding.

The Prime Minister will use an address in London on Monday to outline how spending on the health service will grow by £384 million a week in real terms by 2024.

Mrs May has drawn controversy by insisting the extra funding would come from a "Brexit Dividend" when the UK leaves the EU, as well as a bigger national contribution - seen as code for higher borrowing and stealth taxes.

Mrs May is saying the NHS has a special place in British life.

She is expected to say: "I will never forget visiting the Royal Manchester Children's Hospital in the aftermath of the Manchester Arena attack. There, in the face of the very worst that humanity can do, I witnessed first-hand, the very best.

"Doctors and nurses working 24-hour shifts to treat the injured. Surgeons who were off-shift, dropping everything to come in and perform life-saving operations.

"Paramedics who had risked their own lives to get others to safety. In every instance, I was struck not only by the medical expertise of the staff, but the compassion with which people were treated. This is our National Health Service."

Listen to Paul Johnson discuss the cash injection with Julia Hartley-Brewer on talkRADIO's breakfast show.

The PM is also recalling her own reliance on the NHS for help.

"It was there for me when I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. I will never forget the support - not just of my GP and consultants - but also the clinical nurse specialists attached to my local hospital. Their advice was critical: enabling me to adjust to the new treatment regime, to manage my condition, and minimise the impact it has on my life.

"I would not be doing the job I am doing today without that support."

Of the increased investment, Mrs May is set to say: "The NHS will be growing significantly faster than the economy as a whole, reflecting the fact that the NHS is this Government's number one spending priority.

"This money will be provided specifically for the NHS. And it will be funded in a responsible way."

"This must be a plan that ensures every penny is well spent. It must be a plan that tackles waste, reduces bureaucracy and eliminates unacceptable variation, with all these efficiency savings reinvested back into patient care.

The PM has set aside an additional £1.25 billion each year on top of the settlement to cover specific pensions pressure in order to focus the extra investment on frontline care, a Downing Street spokesman said.