The Labour Party have submitted Freedom of Information requests across the NHS, and in Southampton we have discovered that GPs will be paid £250 to attend each session in their new roles as part of NHS commissioning boards. In addition, elected GP leaders will be paid £30,000 a year in their new roles.
The payments to GPs are just a small part of the nearly £16m set aside for the reckless and wasteful reorganisation of the NHS in Southampton.
John Denham, Labour MP for Southampton Itchen, said today:
“GPs are being put into an enormously difficult situation under these plans. They are under huge pressure to implement changes which will damage the NHS. Everyone waiting for treatment or denied the help they need will want to know why the Tories and Lib Dems are wasting money that could be helping patients.
“This is wrong and that’s why Labour is campaigning for the Tories and Lib Dems to Drop the Bill to change our NHS and start all over again.”
Andy Burnham MP, Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary, said:
“When the NHS needs every penny it can get, patients will be appalled to hear that David Cameron is paying GPs twice.
“The Government are putting GPs in a difficult situation with their plans. It makes no sense at all to take GPs away from patient care to become part-time accountants. Patients and taxpayers lose hands down as the NHS foots the bill twice.
“What clearer illustration could there be of the sheer madness of Cameron’s plans than paying GPs twice while 48,000 nursing posts are being axed.
“These figures show yet more hidden costs of the Government’s plans, asking the NHS to pay for GPs who choose to attend meetings of the new commissioning boards and again for a second doctor to cover their surgery appointments. In some cases, we’ll see this adding up to tens of thousands of pounds per year for each doctor involved.
“This comes on top of the £3.45bn that the Government has ordered be set aside to pay for this unnecessary reorganisation. It is absolutely scandalous to spend money on redundancy costs when every penny is needed for patient care.
“David Cameron has chosen the worst possible time to re-organise the NHS. It is already facing the biggest-ever financial challenge and this wasteful re-organisation threatens to throw the health service into chaos.
“Cameron and Lansley have failed to build public or professional consensus for their re-organisation. GPs don’t support them and can see the damage they will do the profession and to the NHS.
“We are calling on patients, the public and NHS staff to sign the ePetition and add weight to our campaign for the Government to drop this Bill and give the NHS the stability it needs to focus on meeting the financial challenge.”
For more info, click here to find out why Labour wants to Drop The Bill.