David Cameron has launched a petition on NHS spending and announced the five Conservative priorities for a Department of Public Health.
The petition urges the Government to increase spending on the NHS every year, and to stop precious NHS money being wasted on targets and bureaucracy.
The five priorities are as follows:
1. We will create a patient-led NHS where patients are able to choose between a wide range of public and independent sector providers where and when they receive treatment, and where patients are able take control of their own health records.
2. We want to take day-to-day political interference out of the NHS and put healthcare professionals in charge of delivering patient care, according to the demands of patients and in competition with other providers.
3. We will devolve decision-making to doctors and nurses but they will be more accountable than ever for the results they achieve, but to patients not politicians, because we will measure health outcomes, publish extensive data about what providers achieve and pay those providers by results.
4. Having set the framework for these reforms to the NHS, we will be able to focus government action on improving public health.
5. That action will include reforming long-term care to enable people to stay in their own homes and communities.
David Cameron launched the petition and priorities in a keynote speech at the Royal College of Pathologists. In his speech he set out his vision for the NHS and tackled some misunderstandings of Conservative policy.
“Labour wasted their first term in power by failing to reform. And now, after they had finally assumed the mantle of change in the NHS, they have lost their nerve and failed to go far and fast enough. With the publication of our priorities for the Department of Health today, we are ensuring we do not make the same mistakes”, he said.
Mark Reckless welcomed the announcement and added, “I particularly welcome the serious and consistent focus which our Shadow Health Spokesman, Andrew Lansley, has put on public health, an issue which I have raised with Professor Ian Gilmore, President of the Royal College of Physicians, and on which I know many doctors welcome our approach.”