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Quick guide: Labour’s 10-year NHS plan

1. NHS values

  • Restore the Secretary of State’s historic duty to provide services ‘to ensure proper democratic accountability’
  • Replace the competition framework with an ‘NHS Preferred Provider’ framework, including removing the role of Monitor and the Competition and Markets Authority as economic regulators enforcing competition within the NHS, and scrapping the ‘Section 75’ regulations that have made tendering statutory
  • Draw a clear distinction between not-for-profit and for-profit providers by giving the voluntary sector organisations the benefit of longer and more stable arrangements
  • Place tougher controls on Trusts’ ability to earn private patient income in order to ensure NHS patients always get put first and ensure proper safeguards on conflicts of interest
  • Ensure the TTIP Treaty cannot impose procurement or competition obligations on the NHS
  • Extend Freedom of Information provisions to any provider of NHS services
  • Set up a wide-ranging review of NICE which will look at reforming the NICE technology appraisal process and setting tougher rules on implementing NICE guidance

2. Staff

  • Set aside £2.5bn for a Time to Care Fund, raised from a mansion tax on properties worth over £2 million and cracking down on tax avoidance and a new levy on tobacco firms
  • Spend this on: 20,000 more nurses, some of which will provide care in the home for some patients most in need, 8,000 more GPs to ‘tackle the GP access problems faced by hundreds of thousands of families every week’, 3,000 more midwives, building a 5,000-strong ‘homecare’ workforce to care for dying people at home
  • Introduce a ‘new compact’ with NHS staff focused on giving care ‘with dignity and respect’

3. Integrating health and social care

  • Develop a year-of-care tariff for frail elderly and others with complex health needs to cover all of a person’s care costs over a year, where the same organisation is paid for prevention and cure so that ‘the accountable provider, who will have to pay more if clients deteriorate and need hospital care, will have a much stronger incentive to invest in preventing problems, and driving out the culture of care visits limited to 15 minutes’
  • Banning zero-hours contracts in the care sector
  • Create an apprenticeship route to improve the career progression of care workers
  • Introduce ‘safety checks’ for vulnerable older people to identify risks to their health and prevent problems before they occur
  • Have Monitor, as the driver of integration, inspect local health economies to rate their overall and medium term viability
  • Consult on how the ambulance service can be better integrated with NHS 111 and GP out-of-hours services
  • Sharing of patient records between health and care providers and giving patients access to them online

4. Patients’ entitlements

Labour wants to give patients the right to:

  • A guaranteed GP appointment within 48 hours or a same-day consultaiton for those who need it
  • Book ahead with the GP of their choice
  • A maximum one-week wait for cancer tests
  • One-week waits for all urgent diagnostics by 2025
  • Better provisions for home births and dying at home
  • A new right to talking therapies
  • A ‘single point of contact’ for eople with complex physical and mental health conditions
  • A personal care plan ‘not restricted by service boundaries’
  • Peer support from other people learning to manage the same condition
  • Have a say on organisational reconfigurations
  • A range of new rights for family carers

5. Mental health

  • Make ‘parity of esteem’ a reality on the ground by:
  • Making mental health part of training for all NHS staff
  • Create a new right to talking therapies in the NHS Constitution
  • Increasing the proportion of mental health budget spent on children
  • Train school teachers to be able to identify, support and refer children with mental health problems
  • Offer counselling to women who have miscarried
  • Set out a strategy and timetable for a 28-day wating time standard for access to talking therapies for both adults and children

6. Public health

  • Set limits on the amounts of sugar, fat and salt in food marketed to children
  • Introduce minimum unit alcohol pricing
  • Give local authorities power to limit the number of fast food outlets
  • Teach school children emergency first aid including CPR and using defibrillators
  • Place defibrillators in shopping centres, airports, rail stations and sport stadiums and develop an app for where to find the nearest one in an emergency
  • Reinstate the goal of all school children doing a minimum of two outs of physical education a week and make school sporting facilities available to local community sport outside school hours and term time
  • Make sex and relationships education compulsory in all English schools
  • Set out a new sexual health strategy for England

Source: The Labour Party