The Prime Minister has told the House of Commons that she will be able to get us those 5,000 GPs really soon, but she’s just had a lot on her mind.
Answering a question from Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, Theresa May told MPs that she promises she would definitely have those new GPs next time they came round, but she just needed a little more time.
In 2015, former health secretary Jeremy Hunt pledged to recruit 5,000 new GPs by 2020, but since then there has been a decrease in the number of full-time equivalent GPs in England.
However, Ms May told the Commons: ‘Look, I will definitely have them ready for you next time. It’s just been a bit tough what with Brexit, but you know I am good for them – when have I ever let you down?
‘Listen, I promise they will be ready by next month. I’ll even throw in 20,000 extra staff. How does that sound? Luvvly jubbly, you know it makes sense.’
But when GP leaders popped round later that month, they were told by her neighbour, chancellor Phillip Hammond, that she was ‘out’ and ‘he didn’t know where she’d gone’. He added: ‘I’ll say the same thing I said to that Police Federation lot round here earlier – you’ll be lucky to get anything out of her.’
Mr Hammond later told reporters: ‘I know what Ms May is like. She’ll just put it off until she’s out of office. In fairness, that’ll probably be next week.’
Ms May later said: ‘We are committed to recruiting more GPs – an extra 5,000 – as soon as possible, and to ensuring that they can maintain their careers and continue to provide services to their patients as they do, day in and day out.
‘I swear I’m not lying to you.’