Cornish health services starved of cash
Health Select Committee Member and the MP for the West Cornwall and Isles of Scilly constituency of St Ives, Andrew George, is calling on Health Ministers and officials to review funding systems which “are starving Cornish health services of cash and leaving Cornish patients with less funding than other areas.”
Mr George, who recently convened a seminar for local voluntary organisations and health campaigners on 23rd April, is seeking evidence from NHS Kernow (the Cornish Clinical Commissioning Group) and the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust. He warned that “Cornwall has been starved of more cash over the last decade than any region in the country. And our main hospital receives less funding per operation than any hospital in the country, even though its costs are the same as elsewhere!”
Mr George thanked Health Initiative Cornwall – who had a representative at his NHS funding seminar – for a report on health and social care funding in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly published today. The report confirms what Mr George has pointed out before – namely that since 2006, Cornwall has received £220 million less than the Government says it deserves at the same time as its under pressure hospital services have to scrimp and save to pay back a debt which is dwarfed by this under funding.
Mr George said: “Although health funding comes in a complex web and layers of separate allocations and tariffs with multiple strings attached, the overall picture is clear. Cornish patients get less funding than the average. Cornish health services have been starved of hundreds of millions of pounds the Government says we deserve. Pressure to put things out to tender, to run every service as a business unit and to strangle the system in complex accountancy and tariff packages is diverting attention and resources from the need for fair funding and better integration of services.”
Mr George has written to the Health Secretary to request greater transparency and a review of the funding system.
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