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Over 30,000 doctors urge PM to invest in NHS or services ‘will fail’


11 January 2017

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Thousands of doctors have written to the Prime Minister, asserting that the NHS “will fail” without further investment.

The Royal College of Physicians (RCP), which represents 33,000 doctors across 30 specialties and 750 physician associates, told Theresa May that investment is needed “to continue to provide the quality of care people deserve”.

The signatories emphasise that they want to work with the Government to achieve the targets laid out in the Five Year Forward View.

Thousands of doctors have written to the Prime Minister, asserting that the NHS “will fail” without further investment.

The Royal College of Physicians (RCP), which represents 33,000 doctors across 30 specialties and 750 physician associates, told Theresa May that investment is needed “to continue to provide the quality of care people deserve”.

The signatories emphasise that they want to work with the Government to achieve the targets laid out in the Five Year Forward View.

However, they added that an increase of patient need “is outpacing the resources” available to maintain a safe level of care.

The letter explains that services are “too often paralysed by spiralling demand to transform and modernise”, hospitals are “over-full, with too few qualified staff” and services are “struggling or failing to cope”.

The Council members said that “current investment levels are not sufficient to meet current or future patient needs”.

The immediate actions needed, the letter said, are “the reinvigoration of social care services and urgent capital investment in infrastructure”.

The letter said: “We understand that the current financial pressures mean difficult choices. We welcome the decision to increase the number of medical students, and the commitment to extra resources for the health service.

“But, front-line staff and managers across health and social care are clear: investment levels are not sufficient to meet current or future patient needs.”

The letter comes as a third of hospitals declare major incidents due to winter pressures, while the Red Cross stands by its decision to call the situation a “humanitarian crisis”.

The health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, responded to the crisis by stating in Parliament that the four hour waiting time standard for A&E should be relaxed for minor illnesses. 

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