West Cornwall MP Derek Thomas has once again risked getting his knuckles rapped by Tory party bosses by calling for more money for the NHS.
In his MP’s column for The Cornishman this week the Conservative has said that there needs to be a national debate about the way the health service is funded but “The NHS needs more money, this is in no doubt”.
His party colleagues in government have insisted that the NHS currently receives a record amount of funding and it needs to be more efficient to free up cash for services. Theresa May’s office even posted this tweet today:
Thank you to the NHS staff who work hard and do a fantastic job for us day in and day out all year round. Their dedication ensures people get the treatment they need – we've put in an additional £437 million to help, so the NHS has been better prepared than ever this winter. pic.twitter.com/0wAclwHSqN
— Theresa May (@theresa_may) January 4, 2018
Back in October, when a damning CQC report put Treliske on Special Measures (meaning external managers will be brought in to run things) Mr Thomas said “Philip Hammond and Jeremy Hunt must recognise that the transformation our health and care system needs will only be delivered with significant increases in spending on the NHS both in community and urgent care. It’s frankly ridiculous that we are discussing closing community beds as part of transformation without a clear plan of what should be provided for those who need step-down care”
And now the MP has again called for more money “Millions more of us now access NHS services and scores more people work within what is the fifth biggest employer in the world” he writes in his column. “The core principle of being free at the point of use is central to the very ethos of the NHS and I’m not aware of any serious voice calling for this to change. In its 70th year there is an opportunity to have a national debate about how we fund the NHS going forward. The NHS needs more money, this is in no doubt.”
Andrew George, who was Derek Thomas’ predecessor as MP for West Cornwall & Scilly, and who will be challenging again at the next election told us today “His comments are astonishingly breathtaking but very much in character for a “say one thing, do another” chap like himself.
Mr George says the MP’s comments in the local paper calling for more NHS cash directly contradict his actions in Parliament.