I come from a medical family and am married to a doctor, our NHS staff do incredible work. It is our most precious public service and I passionately support the NHS.
The Government has recently announced a Long Term Plan for the NHS. This was developed in partnership with those who know the NHS best – frontline health and care staff, patients and their families and other experts. It follows the announcement of an additional £20.5 billion a year for the NHS by 2023-24. This means the NHS will receive an average 3.4 per cent a year real-terms increase.
There will be a new focus on prevention – with £4.5 billion being invested in primary and community care – personal responsibility and promoting good health, and more rapid diagnostics and new treatments that will improve the care you receive. The plan will ensure that the NHS is:
- Providing the best maternity care in the world – by continuing to improve maternity safety and providing greater mental health support to new parents.
- Supporting ageing and increasing independence – by bringing different health and care teams together to make sure older people are getting the support they need to remain independent, avoiding unnecessary hospital admissions.
- Improving outcomes for all major conditions – through better prevention, detection, treatment and recovery from serious diseases, so people live longer and healthier.
- Increasing the NHS workforce – with tens of thousands more doctors, nurses and other health professionals.
- Bringing the NHS into the digital age – rolling out new digital technologies to deliver improved access to NHS services so everyone in the country will have digital access to their GP, including being able to make appointments, manage prescriptions and view their health records online.
- Cutting waste across the NHS – including through introducing new digital techniques and making back office savings of more than £700 million across the NHS.
I will always fight to maintain 24 hour emergency services at Broomfield. It is excellent news that Broomfield will retain it's 24 hour A&E service. This is very important for Chelmsford.
In Mid Essex the NHS capacity has increased significantly. In 2017/18 the NHS locally carried out 69,806 operations an increase of 6,606 since 2009/10. Diagnostic tests increased from 73,587 in 2009/10 to 76,461 in 2017/18. Funding is also increasing. This year the NHS partnership for Mid and South Essex received £1.9 billion. This is an increase of £62.6 million on the previous year, which will be a cash increase of 3.4%. The Mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group will receive £462.6 million this year, which was a cash increase of 3.31% on the previous year.
Mid Essex is planning over £118m capital investment in hospital buildings and sites to increase the total number of hospital beds by at least fifty, build new and efficient operating theatres and improve technology to make it easier to work across sites. All three main hospitals in the Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust will benefit from additional investment with £41 million to be invested in Southend Hospital, £30 million at Basildon Hospital and £19 million in Broomfield Hospital. It is intended that a further £28m will be invested in additional technology and facilities that will benefit all three hospitals, such as ensuring shared records across all sites. This is awaiting final sign off from the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.
Staffing, Training and the New Medical School
Recruitment in Mid Essex has been challenging for many years. The impact of this is felt on our local GP services as well as specialist and hospital services. There are many reasons for this, but it is partly because staff working in nearby London are paid higher salaries. Until recently there was also no Medical School in Essex to train doctors locally. Anglia Ruskin University has now opened a new Medical School in Chelmsford. It is training 100 new doctors in Chelmsford each year, specialising in mental health and general practice. This means we will be training the next generation of doctors in Chelmsford. This is already increasing the opportunities for experienced staff to take part in research and teaching. Anglia Ruskin University and Broomfield Hospital have been extremely successful at new apprentice style training courses for nurses. As Chelmsford’s MP I have been pressing for more financial support for those taking nursing degrees especially in key areas such as adult nursing and mental health.
If you have an individual concern with local NHS services, please do email me directly.