§ We are all proud of the contribution that the national health service makes to the quality of life in this country. Even in a very tough year, we have decided to increase, once again, the level of real resources going into the health service. National health service spending will be over £1½ billion higher next year in cash terms and over 1½ per cent. higher in real terms than this year's plans. Indeed, the programme is set to rise in real terms in each of the next three years.
§ To ensure that these very substantial extra resources are translated into more and better health care, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Health will be insisting on substantial increases in efficiency and firm containment of 931 pay and the drugs budget. The NHS will be able to maintain the steady improvement of recent years in treating more patients and treating them better.