Luke Pollard

Labour & Co-operative MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport

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More people waiting longer for A&E isn't acceptable


Nearly 1,800 people in Plymouth waited more than four hours to be seen in A&E new figures from the Labour Party reveals. This has gone up nearly 1,000 people in the last twelve months helping to illustrate yet again what pressure the NHS is under because of this Government.

Labour created the NHS in 1945, we saved it in 1997 and we will need to save it again in 2015. The Tories have spent billions reorganising and privatising the NHS, including here in Plymouth. 

Labour will:

  1. Tackle NHS waiting times and put patients first.The Tories have created a crisis in A&E, and thousands of people can’t get a GP appointment when they need one. We will guarantee that you will be able to see a GP within 48 hours, which will help to tackle A&E waiting times.
  2. Provide fairer access to mental health services.We will make mental health the priority it deserves to be. We will ensure that people have access to the treatment and services they need. We will make sure all professional NHS staff receive mental health training.
  3. Create a 21st Century NHS for complex needs.We will make patient services fit for the future by bringing together physical health, mental health and social care into a single system of whole-person care. A single service built around patients.

That means hiring more doctors and nurses here in Plymouth, guaranteeing people in Plymouth get a GP appointment within 48 hours or quicker if they need one urgently. And it means stopping the Tory privatisation of our NHS. 

As Ed Miliband said recently, the NHS is on the ballot paper at the next election. You can save it with Labour or privatise it with the Tories and UKIP. The choice really is that simple - Luke Pollard


You can read the press release I put out about increased A&E waiting times below:

Press Release

NEWS FROM LABOUR: Figures show nearly 1800 patients waiting longer than four hours in hospital A&E in Plymouth over the summer months

Increasing pressure on A&E was laid bare this week in new NHS data which shows 1793 patients waiting longer than four hours in Derriford over the summer, an increase of 927 when compared to the same period last year. 

Commenting on the latest A&E waiting time data, Luke Pollard, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport, said: 

"I'm really worried about the state of the NHS. People tell me they're struggling to get a doctor's appointment, are waiting longer and longer for tests and operations and it seems we're back to the bad old days where people waited over four hours to be seen in A&E.

“Figures for the last three months for Plymouth NHS Trust show that 1793 people have waited longer than four hours in A&E. Nearly 1000 more patients than this time last year. NHS workers are doing an amazing job in harder and harder circumstances. With funding being squeezed in Plymouth, NHS services being privatised and the constant threat of vital services being reconfigured, waiting longer at Derriford isn't a blip, it is part of a worrying trend that shows the NHS is not getting the support it needs from this government.

"I meet health workers regularly who tell me of their struggles with longer hours and changes in the NHS which make it harder for them to provide the quality of care they want to for their patients. This Government has really let people down when it comes to their health service.

“It is time the Government stopped the privatisation of NHS services in Plymouth and instead invested in more doctors, nurses and care workers. I don't want to see anymore public money spent on wasteful reorganisations and costly privatisations. Instead we need to put money into frontline staff, new drugs and hiring more doctors and nurses to cut waiting lists and waiting times."

Labour have pledged to guarantee a GP appointment within 48 hours, and the same day for those who need it and recently backed that up with a guaranteed one week turnaround for cancer tests and results. 

In addition, Labour has promised to invest the proceeds of a levy on tobacco companies and a tax on ‘mansions’ to provide 20,000 more nurses, 8,000 more GPs, 5,000 more home care workers and 3,000 more midwives. 


Editor’s Note: 

1. with SW extracted. 



A&E attendances > 4 hours from arrival to admission, transfer or discharge

NHS Trust

Quarter 2 2013/14

Quarter 2 2014/15

Difference between 2014/15 and 2013/14

Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust




Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust




North Bristol NHS Trust




Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust




Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust




Poole Hospital NHS Foundation Trust




Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust




Royal Devon And Exeter NHS Foundation Trust




Royal United Hospital Bath NHS Trust




Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust




South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust




Taunton And Somerset NHS Foundation Trust




The Royal Bournemouth And Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust




University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust







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