MP Allen lambasts NHS reforms and longer waiting-times

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FRUSTRATED Bulwell Labour MP, Graham Allen, has hit out at controversial health reforms and longer hospital waiting-times.

The coalition government is proposing that doctors in GPs’ practices control the multi-billion pound National Health Service (NHS) budget currently in the hands of Primary Care Trusts.

The Trusts are being abolished in a scheme that aims to manage the health service from the bottom up.

But the idea has come in for hefty criticism from nurses and doctors, patients’ groups and opposition MPs.

Mr Allen said: “I am concerned that the NHS reforms have been ill-considered and rushed through Parliament.

“There have been growing doubts and a crisis of confidence about the proposals.”

Because of this, Mr Allen has consulted with GPs.

He has also voiced concerns that waiting times for operations at Nottingham’s two main hospitals have increased since performance-management targets were scrapped last year.

Nationally there has been a 33% increase in the number of patients having to wait more than 18 months. At both Nottingham City Hospital and the Queen’s Medical Centre, this figure is only marginally better at 31%.

Said Mr Allen: “Sick people in Nottingham are paying the price of the over-hasty cuts of the Lib Dem/Conservative coalition.

“I suspected that hospital waiting-times for minor operations could increase once the coalition took over. But I am surprised and shocked as to how quick and how big these increases actually are.”

He added that the service is likely to suffer, with the threat of redundancies in the NHS looming.