The NHS Confederation has urged political parties to throw their weight behind the UK’s health and social care services by committing to ten policy proposals in upcoming manifestos – and delivering them when in government.
Linking health and care spending to GDP, establishing an Office for Budget Responsibility for Health and creating a £2-billion-a-year transformation fund are among the organisation’s list of pressing priorities for the next government.
Further proposals include implementing the cap on social care costs, delivering and extending the commitment to mental health and protecting EU NHS staff.
Taken together, the measures, published on 2 May, will enable the NHS and its partners to continue to deliver world-class care and services now and in generations to come.
“It is time for society as a whole to face up to the health and care challenge and to bring evidence and some certainty to what is one of the greatest challenges facing this country,” the head of the Confederation, Niall Dickson said on 2 May.
Money alone not the answer
The policy proposals come just five weeks ahead of a general election on 8 June set to be dominated the implications of the UK’s historic decision to leave the EU.
“This election is understandably going to be dominated by Brexit, but unless we act soon we will face another daunting issue – a health and care system that is simply incapable of meeting modern needs.”
But the organisation is clear that money alone will not solve all the challenges facing the NHS. The new government must give the health service the space to create the right conditions to cope with current and future pressures.
In setting out what the health and care sector needs from the new government, the NHS Confederation aims to influence the election debate and secure clear commitments for voters.
The election on 8 June comes a week before the Confederation's flagship conference in Liverpool, on 14 and 15 June. It will be the first major gathering of health and social care leaders following polling day, bringing the sector together at a critical juncture for services nationwide.
Keynote speakers include the Secretary of State for Health and NHS England's Simon Stevens.
Find out more
View all ten policy asks in Securing a sustainable health and care system: Priorities for the next government.