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Tory Party pledges £8bn over five years in election manifesto

Tory Party pledges £8bn over five years in election manifesto

The Conservative Party has pledged £8bn extra for the NHS over five years if they are elected in next month’s general election
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The Conservative Party has pledged £8bn extra for the NHS over five years if they are elected in next month’s general election.

In their manifesto, the party committed to increasing funding for the health service every year, forcing non-UK residents to pay more for healthcare and ensuring EU staff can remain in the NHS after Brexit.

The manifesto says the party ‘will make it a priority in our negotiations with the European Union that the 140,000 staff from EU countries can carry on making their vital contribution to our health and care system’.

However, it adds that the health service ‘cannot continue to rely’ on workers from the EU and commits to pushing forward with its commitment to train an extra 1,500 medical student every year.

While not included in the manifesto, the Conservative Party confirmed to Healthcare Leader that they also plan to move forward with requirements for newly trained doctors to work in the NHS for at least four years after graduating.

The manifesto also said a Tory Government would increase the Immigration Health Surcharge from £200 per year to £600 for migrant workers and from £150 to £450 for international students ‘to cover their use of the NHS’.

It says: ‘This remains competitive compared to the costs of health insurance paid by UK nationals working or studying overseas.’

The Conservative Party has also promised to provide everyone with seven day GP access by 2019 – one year earlier than previously planned.

Dr Mark Porter, BMA council chair, said: ‘The extra £8bn touted in this manifesto for the NHS is smoke and mirrors – rather than extra money, this essentially extends the funding already promised in the 2015 spending review for another two years and falls far short of what is needed.’

He added that it is ‘encouraging’ to see that the party will attempt to secure the jobs of EU staff working in the NHS, ‘but the emphasis on training future doctors in the UK will not solve the current workforce crisis’.

He said: ‘Any future government must address the reasons why so many UK-trained doctors are considering leaving the NHS rather than forcing doctors to stay in the health service.

‘Demotivated, burnt-out doctors who don’t want to be in their jobs, will not be good for patients.’

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