Defending Rochford and Southend’s Hospital and Primary Care services

Ashley working with the Save Southend NHS campaign
Ashley working with the Save Southend NHS campaign

The National Health Service was created by Labour government to provide universal healthcare for all on the basis of need, free at the point of use. Conservative mismanagement and cuts to the NHS are ideologically driven with the end-goal being a US-style free-market insurance-based healthcare system.

The failing and controversial Mid and South Essex Sustainability and Transformation Partnership is an example of the government putting politics first and the needs of patients second.

The NHS is not a ‘nice to have’ or a ‘luxury’, it is at the heart of what it is to be British and as a cancer survivor myself I know how crucial it is to us all. A Labour Government will ask a new body – NHS Excellence – to lead a review of the Sustainability and Transformation plans and Labour will ensure patients and local communities are involved at every stage.

As your MP I would work alongside patient groups, healthcare professionals and communities to develop plans for our hospital together. Any proposed changes to local services must be driven by clinical evidence and patient need, not by financial or ideological considerations.

The Tories claim their proposals will not have an impact on services but local people know that patient need and safety as being put second to the goals of efficiencies and budget cuts. These Tory plans are dangerous, ill-thought through and I would fight any attempt to under-fund or downgrade healthcare services that are vital to our community.

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