Wednesday, 29 October 2014

I want real recall for MPs, elected representatives and members of Quangos

l believe elected and unelected public represents should be accountable to their communities that is why I support recall. I support the principle of right to recall when an MP has done something wrong. Labour has long championed this, and it was in our last manifesto. I think it is one of the ways we can empower the electorate, and help restore public trust in politics. The Government has now brought forward its Bill, but it is not strong enough. It would still fail to hold to account MPs for certain serious acts of misconduct like the Tory MPs who took cash for questions in the 1990s. Labour supports Recall where an MP has done something wrong, but we are worried about a model of Recall that would give too much power to well-funded interest groups to pressure MPs into supporting their agenda with a constant threat of recall petitions. It is critical that MPs are able to vote with their conscience on the issues of the day and then face the electorate at a General Election. A balance must be drawn between giving the people the opportunity to recall an MP for misconduct and allowing MPs to make difficult decisions that might anger certain organisations or groups. We will give the Government’s Bill a Second Reading. At Committee stage, I would of voted for amendments that strengthen the Government’s proposals

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Health and Social Care

Today I attended a meeting on the newly proposed Health and Well being campus in the grounds of the community hospital.

There were many good proposal, improved outpatient care, good public health and proposal for medicial assessment and the new Grove House Doctors Surgery.

The downside to the proposal was the reduction in bed numbers from 16 to 8 beds with an additional 2 beds for medicial assessment and 2 beds for amulmatory care.

There was no real discussion on the social care, this is a major challenge for the coming years.

The truth that came from the meeting was the very real challenge that will face the NHS in the coming few years.

Somerset health services has to reduce its expenditure by £200 million in today's money terms over the next five years.

The Health and Social Care Act has further complicated the future provision of health services, it would appear that there is no current advice from the department of health in relation to capital investment in new health centres, further to this the site and buildings are owned by the NHS Proprtty services Ltd, any future provision will have to be agreed with them and of course they are now having to maximise their income, the Somerset Clinical Commissioning group will fund the new facility with another provider supplying the staffing.

Grove house Doctor surgery wishes to build its own buildings.

We must ensure that Shepton Mallet receives the best healthcare, that offers the patients and their families good quality health services, that includes maximises the number of beds and good quality outpatient services, but also high quality public health advice that will give individuals the tools to have better health and save the NHS money.

We need to repeal the Health and Social Care Act and replace it with a set of policies that genuinely puts patients first, rather than markets, we need collaboration not competition, services before profit.

That is the choice.