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MPs lacking 'political will' to make NHS improvements

MPs lacking 'political will' to make NHS improvements


While admitting that there is an urgent need to change the NHS, politicians have admitted "insufficient political will" to make changes locally. 

A survey published by the NHS Confederation reveals that 81% of MPs believe the NHS in their local constituency needs to change to meet the needs of patients in the future. 

However, 65% said there is "insufficient political will" to implement change, and one in four said their would not back changes to their local NHS if their constituents are opposed. 

Rob Webster, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: "The resounding message from this survey is clear - we need an open and honest apolitical conversation between the public, patients, politicians and those delivering healthcare across our communities, about the future challenges facing the NHS. 

"We must then all support each other to drive forward the changes needed to ensure we can deliver a 21st century NHS where we have the right care, in the right place, at the right time."

Dr Ian Wilson, chairman of the British Medical Association's Representative Body, said: "It is unbelievable that while eight out of 10 politicians agree change is essential, almost seven out of 10 say there is insufficient political will to allow this to happen.

"The reality is that the NHS is under intense pressure from a combination of rising patient demand and declining funding. Politicians must confront these challenges head on in order to ensure we can continue to deliver a high standard of care while remaining free at the point of use." 

The survey also revealed that 48% of MPs fear a free NHS may be unsustainable if challenges are not tackled. 

Dr Wilson said: "The government must not risk the NHS' core value of being based on need, not ability to pay, purely because they are unwilling to take action and make the changes they admit are desperately needed. 


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