Streeting: Labour would shift focus of health spending towards primary care

A Labor government would over time shift the focus of health spending to primary care, the shadow health secretary has said.

Wes Streeting criticized the way in which “we underinvest in basic services, community services, mental health, diagnostics and capital” and stressed “we need to shift that focus”.

The Shadow Health Secretary said NHS trust leaders are aware that the pressure in hospitals is “partially due to the NHS’s blocked front door” and to delayed social care redundancies.

He said Labor was also looking at “a number of things” in relation to prevention measures and vowed to go further than the government on smoking and vaping.

Mr Streeting made his comments on the BBC’s Sunday With Laura Kuenssberg program and ahead of Sir Keir Starmer’s speech on Monday, in which the Labor leader will set out his vision for modernizing the NHS.

When asked on the show if his party plans to take more money and resources away from hospitals to “bring more care into the community,” the shadow health secretary said, “We want to see three big changes that Keir will be talking about. ” morning.

“The first major shift is to shift the focus of healthcare from the hospital to the community, so people have easier access to their GP…

“I think over time we would want to shift the proportion of spending in our healthcare system because I think … if you compare the NHS to other countries in the OECD that are doing much better than we are here in the UK, they are Circumstances…” are very different.

“We are underinvesting in basic services, community services, mental health, diagnostics and capital and need to shift that focus.

“You have to make it over time. I don’t think you will speak to a single hospital manager in the country who says they are awash with cash. This will be a difficult year for them.”

He added: “But over time one would want to shift that proportion and the evidence for that is that despite the pressure they are under, many hospital foundation executives are already doing so.

“They recognize that some of the pressure we are seeing in hospitals is due to the congested front door to the NHS in primary care and community services, and the delayed redundancies in social care.”

Pressed for the Labor Party’s social plan, Mr Streeting said: “We have asked the Fabian Society to do a thorough job for us,” adding: “This will be published in June.”

The deputy health secretary was also asked about public health measures, such as minimum alcohol prices.

He said: “We are looking at a number of things related to prevention measures and public health measures. We want to make sure we not only live longer, we live healthier longer.”

He added, “On smoking, for example, we’ve said that we’re going to go a lot further than the government, especially not just smoking, by the way, but vaping, too, where we have a whole generation of children and young people.” People who become addicted to nicotine under the supervision of this government.

“Teachers report that children in the classroom are showing signs of nicotine addiction. I find it outrageous how these irresponsible industries are behaving.”

Shadow Health Secretary Liz Kendall was also questioned on Sunday morning about Sir Keir’s plan for the NHS.

When asked on Sky News’ Sophy Ridge On Sunday about Labor’s ambitions for the biggest overhaul of the NHS since 1945 and whether the party is seeking tax increases, Ms Kendall replied: “No. Can I get back to you on this point? In fact, I’ve always said it’s true that you can earn more in a supermarket or in hospitality, but the fact is that a third of people, a third of those who leave the care workforce actually go to the NHS. Okay, so we need a joint staffing plan there.”

Pressed again on money issues and whether Labor would consider introducing wealth taxes, Ms Kendall said: “I’m not going to sit here picking numbers out of thin air when God knows what the economy will be like by the time of the next general will be.” choice.

“We’ve been pretty honest about where we want to see investment increase and where we’re going to get the money from.

“We have said we will abolish Non-Dom tax status to fund the largest staffing increase in NHS history, 10,000 more nurses and a doubling of medical school places.”

She added: “While additional investment is essential, I would argue that reform is essential as well.”

Russell Falcon

Russell Falcon is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Russell Falcon joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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