The NHS will receive an additional £30bn if Labour are elected in June, Labour’s shadow health secretary told supporters in Tooting.
Jonathan Ashworth, candidate for Leicester South, chose Tooting Neighbourhood Centre as the venue for his Monday announcement of Labour’s election pledges for the NHS.
The total of £30bn over the next five years would go in to infrastructure, with the aim of reducing waiting times for cancer treatments, as well as more money for A&E, pay rises for staff, improved care for the elderly and taking steps towards making British children the healthiest in the world.
Rosena Allin-Khan, Labour candidate for Tooting and an A&E doctor at St George’s Hospital, also spoke at the event.
She said: “In Tooting we have some of the greatest doctors, nurses, porters, receptionists, in the land – Tooting is full of them!”
Dr Allin-Khan, who won a 2016 by-election to represent Tooting after Sadiq Khan’s election as London mayor, described an NHS crisis that is turning in to a disaster.
She said that on recent shifts she had seen staff crying in toilets because they could no longer work in the increasingly strained and stressful environment, and has spoken to nurses who have had to use food banks.
She said: “We have had to make life and death decisions based on cost.
“What an embarrassment.”
Mr Ashworth described Dr Allin-Khan as a ‘brilliant fighter for the people of Tooting’ and praised the hard work being done at St George’s.
The hospital has taken in patients from other London hospitals affected by large-scale hacking attacks which also crippled GP surgeries across the country last week.
He described the additional funding outlined in his speech as a birthday present for the NHS, with the 70th anniversary of its creation falling next year.
He said: “We as a party dreamt of an NHS free at the point of use, available to all, irrespective of means and we took responsibility to bring it about.”