Starmer says Labor wants to cut heart attacks and strokes quarterly within decade
Storms says Labour would zone in on the biggest killers.
He says it would cut heart attacks and strokes by a quarter within a decade.
On cancer, Labor would ensure that 75% of all cancers are diagnosed at stage one or two. He says the survival rate for stage one or two cancers is 81%. But in stage three or four, it’s only 26%.
And as for suicide, he says Labor would do it reverse the number of deaths by suicide.
He says three friends have died this way. Suicide is the biggest killer of young lives in this country, he says. Labor would
PCS union accuses PM of ‘double standards’ over Braverman, says civil servant who broke rules would not be treated so leniently
Turning back to Suella Braverman, the PCS civil service union has joined the FDA (see 09.05) to criticize the Home Secretary for asking officials to arrange a private speed awareness course. In a statement from the PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said:
Violating the Ministerial Act does not seem to be so much a lapse of judgment as a pattern of behavior.
Suella Braverman is quick to criticize officials when it suits her, but even quicker to ask for help when she needs it.
The role of civil servants is to deliver the government’s policy not to act as her personal assistants.
How many more lives will Rishi Sunak give her? This is a double standard. If she was a PCS member she would not expect to be treated so leniently.
Q: Why do you think? Labour underperformed in Harlow in the local elections?
Storms says when he became leader people didn’t think Labor could win the next election. Now it is on a trajectory where it could form a majority government.
People feel that everything is broken, and that they are worse off than 13 years ago, he says.
And that’s all. Questions and answers are over. Starmer took more questions than he normally does at these events (although, if anything, his answers were shorter and less revealing than usual).
Q: How much have you set aside to renew? NHS property? And will you use public-private partnerships?
Storms says Labour will have to address the quality of the NHS farm. The legacy is terrible, he says. But he doesn’t just want to “fix the problems” and put it back where it was 13 years ago. That would not be ambitious enough, he says.
Q: Would you like to see health spending as a share of total government spending increasing?
Storms says he wants to see NHS money is spent efficiently. That can make “a huge difference,” he says.
Before the election, Labour will indicate where it would spend extra money, and where the funding would come from, he says.
But he says again that he thinks “it’s all about money” is looking at this the wrong way.
Change and reform are equally important, he says.
Q: Do you think that NHS is institutionally racist? And how would you reduce racial disparities in health outcomes?
Storms says he is not here to criticize the NHS. But he says inequalities must be addressed.
Q: Would you proceed with the plan to build or upgrade 40 hospitals?
Storms says that it is difficult to continue with a plan that is not a plan. These 40 new hospitals are quite mythical, he says. But he says Labour will need to ensure that the buildings are properly maintained.
Q: Do you rule out a salt or sugar tax for good?
Storms says his focus today is on limits to unhealthy food advertising.
Q: Would you give nurses another pay rise? And do you think consultants should get a higher pay rise?
Storms says this government has lasted as long as the last Labour won. Under Labour, nurses were paid fairly and nurses did not strike. Now no one is arguing with the idea that the NHS is on its knees. The only debate is whether it’s on the knees or on the face.
Q: You haven’t said anything about social welfare. Is it no longer a priority?
Storms says it remains a priority.
Labor has put forward a plan for care workers. He says his sister works in this sector, so he knows it well. Labour would improve career development opportunities for careers, he says.
And it would encourage more people to be cared for at home.
Q: How much will these plans cost?
Storms says specific proposals have been costed.
And he says technology can cut costs. Earlier cancer diagnosis would reduce costs. And merging waiting lists, so that people can be seen at different hospitals, would reduce costs.
He says he understands why journalists ask these questions about costs. But he says he has been running a public service. He knows it’s not all about funding.
Q: You seem to be kicking the money issue into the long grass. How can people trust you if you don’t say how will pay for this? And why don’t you say if you will pay NHS staff more?
Storms says, where Labour has proposed measures that would cost more, it has said how it would finance it. For example, it would fund the training of more doctors and nurses by eliminating non-conviction status.
As for NHS staff, he says his wife works for the NHS, so he knows what NHS staff think. They are worried about whether the NHS will continue to exist. That concern is fair, he says. They are very happy with the plan to train more staff.
Storms now taking questions.
Q: Would the NHS get more money overall during Labour?
Storms says it’s not just about money. Money is part of the solution. But change is also important. The NHS need to use technology more effectively, he says.
Storms says Labour would allow patients to visit nearby hospitals for treatment if faster treatment is available there than is available at their local.