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Parties outline plans for health and social care (part two)

Tagged In:  Allied Health

In the second part of our focus on what the political manifestos hold as the date for the 2017 General Election draws near, we look at plans that Plaid Cymru, The Green Party, UKIP and the Scottish National Party propose for health and social care.

Plaid Cymru

Plaid Cymru proposes a social care rescue plan to help people live independently and increase the role of community hospitals, establish a “carers contract”, and train 1,000 extra doctors and 5,000 more nurses in the next decade. The party has vowed to save 10,000 lives over 10 years through a range of measures, from public health actions and promoting individual lifestyle changes, to ensuring earlier diagnosis of disease and better access to life-saving treatments, as well as giving veterans “excellent health care, including mental health care, and adequate housing.”

Green Party

The Green Party manifesto includes moves to reverse privatisation of the NHS to ensure all health and dental services are publicly provided and funded, and free at the point of access and bring mental health care in line with physical health care. There will be investment in social care for the elderly and all those who need it and a single budget covering health and social services to make life easier for people who need to access several types of service. The party has pledged to ensure people experiencing mental health crises are supported close to their home and support networks and will introduce mental health awareness training within the public sector and encourage a more open dialogue on the issue in wider society.


UKIP plan to establish a Department for Health and Care, and create a sustainably funded social care system assimilated into the NHS. The party has pledged to invest up to £2bn a year in social care and continue to pay attendance allowance for over 65s who need help with personal care with £400m a year allocated to dementia research and treatment. It will protect meals-on-wheels, luncheon clubs, day care services and home care, abolish annual assessment for continuing healthcare funding for those with a degenerative, terminal illness and introduce a legally binding Dignity Code to improve quality and standard of care for older people in hospital, care homes or their own home. Carers will be given an extra five days’ paid holiday each year and the carer’s allowance will rise to £73.10 a week. There will be funding for tuition fees for medical students committed to working within the NHS for at least 10 years after they qualify to deliver 10,000 new GPs by 2025 with new funding arrangements to incentivise doctors to work in geographical areas most in need and an increase in the number of nurse training placements. The 1% pay increase cap for frontline NHS workers earning less than £35,000 will be discontinued, rights for EU healthcare workers will be guaranteed, hospital car parking charges in England will be scrapped and the care quality commission abolished. Spending on mental health services will rise by at least £500m a year and waiting times will be 28 days maximum.


With health controlled by Holyrood, the SNP will call on the new UK government to increase health spending per head of population in England to the current Scottish level, which is 7% higher. That move would raise the health budget in England by £11bn more than inflation by 2022 and the NHS Scotland budget by up to £1bn. The party would work with NHS unions over the impact of pay restraint, look to protect the right of NHS staff from across Europe to live and work in Scotland and the UK and endeavour to reverse any supposed privatisation of the health service. It will maintain free personal and nursing care and remain committed to free prescriptions in Scotland.

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