This site is intended for health professionals only

Greens pledge to increase primary care funding in manifesto

Greens pledge to increase primary care funding in manifesto
By Sofia Lind, Joanna Robertson and Madeleine Anderson
13 June 2024

Green Party MPs elected on 4 July will ‘push for’ increased funding to primary care, with an aim for additional annual spending to reach £1.5bn by 2030.

The Greens, which currently have one member of Parliament, also said they want a ‘guarantee’ for ‘rapid access to a GP and same-day access in case of urgent need’.

Its manifesto, published yesterday, stressed that ‘investing in GPs and public health is key to prevention, early diagnosis and improving our quality of life, while also reducing the burden on the NHS’.

Any elected Green MPs will also push for a restoration of public health budgets to 2015/16 levels with an immediate annual increase of £1.5bn.

‘Smoking cessation, drug and alcohol treatment and sexual health services all need to be properly funded,’ the manifesto said.

The party also wants an ‘immediate boost to the pay of NHS staff, including the restoration of junior doctors’ pay, to help with staff retention’.

‘To meet these aims, we estimate that the NHS in England will require additional annual expenditure of £8bn in the first full year of the next Parliament, rising to £28bn in total by 2030,’ the party’s manifesto said.

‘Additional capital spending of at least £20bn is needed over the next five years for hospital building and repair.’

The party also pledged to work towards making HIV prevention pill PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) available from community pharmacies.

This will form part of a ‘joined-up evidence based approach’ to work towards no more HIV transmissions by 2030.

The party will also advocate for the drug to be made available from GP services and online, it said.

In a PrEP roadmap published in February, the government said ‘more evidence’ was needed ‘on the effectiveness of providing PrEP outside SHSs’.

Green MPs will also advocate for a National Commission ‘to agree an evidenced-based approach to reform of the UK’s counter-productive drugs laws’, the manifesto said.

The party has previously proposed that recreational drugs be available to purchase from licensed outlets, with access to health and support services for those that need them, and the supply regulated by the government.

Commenting at the manifesto launch, Green Party co-leader, Adrian Ramsay, said: ‘Our NHS is at breaking point following 14 years of underfunding. Patients are stuck in hospital corridors, people can’t see their GP or NHS dentist when they need to and staff are severely overstretched.

‘Greens believe passionately in the NHS and we are the only party to be honest with the public that it’s going to cost money to nurse the NHS back to health after 14 years of Conservative damage.

‘Not just by shifting a small pot around, but by asking the very richest in our society to pay a modest amount more in tax to fund the investment we need to nurse the NHS back to health.’

Other Green manifesto commitments include:

  • A year-on-year reduction in waiting lists.
  • Guaranteed access to an NHS dentist.
  • A National Commission ‘to agree an evidenced-based approach to reform of the UK’s counter-productive drugs laws’.
  • Increased funding for mental health care, putting it on an equal footing with physical health care and enabling people to access evidence-based mental health therapies within 28 days.
  • A change in the law to legalise assisted dying for people suffering from terminal disease ‘who wish to avoid prolonged unnecessary suffering, if this is their clear and settled will’. 

The latest unveiling of policies follows the Conservative Party election manifesto launched on Tuesday, which focused on tax cuts, including a 2p reduction to National Insurance, in addition to previously-announced plans for investing in GP surgeries. The BMA pointed out it had no solution to doctor strikes nor GP employment problems.

Want news like this straight to your inbox?

Related articles