Larry Sanders, Green Party candidate for Witney, has laid down a challenge to all parties contesting the Witney by election concerning the future of the NHS.
Larry Sanders said: “Witney elections are normally a coronation for the Conservative candidate, no matter how inexperienced. If cuts and privatisation of the NHS and Social Care continue as planned, millions of people will suffer. Will the Witney electorate vote for the NHS?”
Larry explains: “Without additional funding the NHS is facing a £20 billion gap in it's finances by 2020-21. We are already short of GPs, hospital doctors, and hospital beds. Severe cuts are being announced or leaked almost every day. The Green Party is committed to providing that amount, half in the first year.”
We cannot afford continuing privatisation. Organising the NHS to make privatisation possible has added about £9 billion per year in administrative costs; it has led to expensive and damaging fragmentation and large sums are being siphoned off in private profit. The Green Party has introduced the ‘NHS Reinstatement Bill’ to Parliament. This will reverse past privatisation, prevent future privatisation and restore the unity of the NHS.
Larry focuses on those in most need:
Millions of elderly people need Social Care to help them get out of bed, eat, get dressed, meet with other people and take some of the pressure from their families. Family carers are often in their 80s and 90s. There have been huge cuts in grants to local authorities. As a result the care system is broken. The Green Party proposes to restore those billions of cuts and provide care on the same basis as the NHS: free at the point of need.
Larry argues that we can afford good quality Health and Social Care: "We spend 25% less on health care than other countries of comparable wealth. We and our dependencies are probably the largest tax havens. Why should we not collect the taxes due? The Green Party answer is that we can afford good quality Health and Social Care. We only need the political will."