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img850-general-election-campaign.pngAlmost every person I know has been touched by cancer either fighting it themselves or watching friends or family struggling against with this devastating disease.  So for me it was easy to sign up to be a Breast Cancer Ambassador for the Totnes Constituency.

Labour is committed to fighting cancer it is our goal to match the best in Europe for cancer survival, which could save up to 10,000 lives a year.

Earlier diagnosis is critical to improving cancer survival, because treatment is more likely to be successful at an earlier stage. Late diagnosis is not just worse for health outcomes, but can cost the NHS more too.

By 2020, the next Labour Government will guarantee a maximum one-week wait for cancer tests and results – on route to a goal of a one-week maximum wait for all urgent diagnostic tests by 2025.

Speeding up tests will have several benefits, including helping people get treatment quicker and reducing the anxiety around waiting for a cancer test result. At the moment, people can be waiting six weeks or more for a cancer test, and we want to put a stop to that.

Labour’s cancer test guarantee is part of a wider plan to improve early cancer diagnosis. This includes more public awareness campaigns – including making Teenage Cancer Trust’s programme of awareness sessions on cancer available to every school in England – and ensuring GPs have access to the training and support they need to diagnose cancer. Our plans to improve GP access will also help improve cancer diagnosis: research has found that patients who are able to see their GPs within 48 hours are less likely to have their initial cancer diagnosis via an emergency hospital admission.

On cancer screening, we will roll out the Bowel Scope Screening programme to the whole country and look at whether we should introduce new lung and ovarian cancer screening programmes. We will also publish a new cancer strategy within six months of entering a Labour Government and a plan to tackle ageism in cancer treatment.

Labour will create a new Cancer Treatments Fund to improve access not just to the latest drugs but also to the latest forms of radiotherapy and surgery.

The Tory-led Government’s decision to restrict a fund for extra investment to drugs has led to thousands of patients missing out on cutting-edge radiotherapy and surgery – the two forms of treatment that are responsible for nine in ten cases where cancer is cured.

The Cancer Treatments Fund will give all types of cancer treatment the priority they deserve – potentially benefitting thousands of patients. As part of this, Labour will guarantee that any patient in receipt of a drug from the Cancer Drugs Fund, when it comes to an end in March 2016, would continue to be offered that drug in the Cancer Treatments Fund.

Cancer is a dreadful disease and Labour is committed to us fighting it together.

Fighting cancer together

Almost every person I know has been touched by cancer either fighting it themselves or watching friends or family struggling against with this devastating disease.  So for me it was...

Labour’s manifesto starts from the idea that Britain only succeeds when working people succeed.

It shows how, by securing the nation’s finances, we are able to improve the family finances of the working people of Britain.

The 2015 Manifesto is different to manifestos that Labour has published in the past. Instead of a list of new spending commitments, the very first page of this Manifesto sets out our plan to secure the nation’s finances – with a Budget Responsibility Lock guaranteeing that every manifesto policy is paid for without a single penny of extra borrowing.

People want change, a better future, but they want to know we can make progress while securing the nation’s finances. This Manifesto answers that question with a plan for big reform, not big spending.

That responsible approach contrasts with an increasingly desperate Conservative campaign that is making promises it has no idea how to pay for. There is nothing more dangerous for the NHS than saying you’ll protect it with no idea where the money is coming from. It is an approach that leads to broken promises, with working people paying the price in higher taxes and public services undermined.

So this Manifesto and this election campaign show that Labour is not only the party of change, but the party of responsibility too.

It is more ambitious because it starts from a clear commitment to balance the books but does not stop there. On the foundation of a plan to secure the nation’s finances it shows how we improve the family finances of the working people of Britain by:

  • Raising the minimum wage to more than £8 by October 2019.
  • Protecting tax credits in the next parliament, to back working families.
  • Introducing guaranteed wrap-around childcare through primary schools, underpinned by a new National Primary Childcare Service.
  • Supporting the squeezed middle by pledging not to raise income tax, National Insurance or VAT.
  • Freezing rail fares in the first year of a Labour Government while we reform the railways.

 This builds on wider polices to:

  • Reward hard work – banning exploitative zero hour contracts, freezing energy bills and backing small businesses.
  • Share prosperity – by guaranteeing apprenticeships, cutting tuition fees, getting homes built, and devolving powers to every part of Britain.
  • Build a better Britain – ensuring the NHS has time to care, opening up our politics, and being a confident outward looking nation once again.

To read the full manifesto click here

Manifesto Launch

Labour’s manifesto starts from the idea that Britain only succeeds when working people succeed. It shows how, by securing the nation’s finances, we are able to improve the family finances...

6337_14_NHS_National_Campaign_leaflet_Front.jpgLast week the Head of the British Medical Association said that patients could have to pay for basic medical care after the election. He’s warning that politicians could “destroy the ultimate ethos of the NHS” by introducing fees and charges for NHS services like GP appointments. 

Since this statement was made I have received many emails asking if Labour will commit to an NHS free at the point of use.

The simple answer to this question is YES

Labour is committed to the NHS remaining free at the point of use.

Our NHS is precious.  We all rely on it to care for us and our loved ones.  We want to protect it for the future, and we don't want to see it run down or sold off.

Over the past few years, NHS funding has been squeezed so much that services are suffering.  This winter, hospitals up and down the country have declared "major incidents" because they're struggling to cope.  And now most hospitals are warning that their budget for next year has "reached the point where patient care is at risk.”

Labour will

  • Recruit and train 20,000 more nurses and 8,000 more GPs, paid for through a £2.5 billion Time to Care Fund, funded by a tax on properties worth £2 million or more.
  • Guarantee a GP appointment within 48 hours – and on the same day for those who need it.
  • Guarantee a maximum one-week wait for cancer tests and create a new Cancer Treatments Fund to improve access to drugs, radiotherapy and surgery.
  • Join up services from home to hospital with a single point of contact for those who need it – bringing together physical health, mental health and social care.
  • Improve access to mental health support, with a new right to talking therapies enshrined in the NHS Constitution just as people currently have a right to drugs and medical treatment.
  • Tackle the scandal of 15 minute care slots, recruit 5,000 new home care workers to help provide care for those with the greatest needs at home, and introduce a new system of safety checks for vulnerable older people.
  • Ensure that when changes are proposed to local hospital services, patients and the public have a seat round the table from the very start, helping design and decide on plans for change.
  • Repeal the Health and Social Care Act to scrap David Cameron’s privatisation plans and put the right values back at the heart of the NHS

I am supporting the 38 degree petition on this issue and would encourage other people to sign up by following the link below:-

secure.38degrees.org.uk/keep-nhs-free-petition

An NHS Free At The Point Of Use

Last week the Head of the British Medical Association said that patients could have to pay for basic medical care after the election. He’s warning that politicians could “destroy the...

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