Luke Pollard MP

Labour & Co-operative MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport

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Does anyone want Plymouth to get its own NHS CCG?

In today's Herald there's a piece about whether Plymouth should get its own CCG to run NHS services in the city. This idea is the brainchild not of medical professionals or experts in health funding but our very own Mr Colvile, our local Tory MP.

Plymouth currently is part of the NEW Devon (North, East, West Devon) CCG. As we know there's a cash crisis in the NHS. Plymouth has always been under-funded in the NHS and that's one of the reasons why our hospital is in debt and why GPs surgeries are closing.

Instead of correctly identifying the solution to this problem being fairer funding for Plymouth - Mr Colvile has called for Plymouth to get its own CCG. This is a very poor idea. No one in the NHS wants this. The City Council (both when it was Labour and now when it is Tory and UKIP) want this. Why? Because it will lock in under-funding for Plymouth and mean we can't access the much better funded NHS budgets for the rest of Devon.

My understanding is that this has been explained to Mr Colvile but he still persists on calling for it. MPs need to be really careful when attempting to 'look busy' like this. This is a short-term media fix for an MP who has been caught asleep at the wheel in recent months. It won't help Plymouth, in fact it will do the opposite. It comes with nice and simple pro-Plymouth language though, so don't get taken in by this.

I've called on Mr Colvile many times to stop voting for cuts that hurt Plymouth and to stop backing the privatisation of our NHS services. I'd also like to see him back our excellent junior docotrs and restore support for trainee nurses. What Plymouth doesn’t need is yet another painful and expensive NHS reorganisation. It needs fairer funding for an end to privatisation.


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