Chancellor George Osborne promised that the new government would allocate £219 million to save St. Helier Hospital. He was challenged directly by Tom Brake, MP for Carshalton and Wallington, during Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday.
Mr. Osborne pledged to provide funding for St. Helier as long as the hospital “continues to represent value for money.” He said he thinks the hospital is performing well now.
Tom has led a campaign to save St. Helier hospital from harmful budget cuts for years. More than 21,000 local residents have signed his online petition to save the hospital, which can be found at http://www.saveoursthelier.co.uk/save_our_st_helier_petition.
“I am pleased that Mr. Osborne has promised to stick with the coalition government’s plan to allocate £219 million to St. Helier Hospital. I intend to hold him to his promise. Our community deserves convenient access to essential healthcare services from a quality hospital like St. Helier. Osborne and the Conservative government must now deliver it.”
Tom Brake (Carshalton and Wallington) (LD): The Chancellor will be aware that under the coalition, £219 million was allocated to rebuilding St Helier hospital. Will he restate the commitment to that funding so that we can save St Helier?
Mr Osborne: We did commit to that hospital project, and provided that it continues to represent value for money, which I am pretty clear that it does, we will go on providing that support. What we have done is to commit to the Simon Stevens plan for the national health service—an additional £8 billion of NHS spending —which is something we can only do if we have our public finances in better order and we are growing our economy, which is precisely what we are doing.