HC Deb 08 July 1998 vol 315 cc1070-1
Q3. Mr. Andrew George (St. Ives)

What plans he has to pay an official visit to the St. Ives constituency.

The Prime Minister

I have no immediate plans to do so.

Mr. George

That is a pity. In my constituency, we are concerned about the NHS. When will the highly committed NHS staff of three of the four community hospitals in my constituency that I visited this weekend be told whether they have hospitals to work in and jobs to go to? Their jobs have been on the line since October last year, and the plans have been on the desk of the Secretary of State for ever and a day. When will they know whether they can join in the 50th anniversary celebrations of the NHS?

The Prime Minister

The plans have not been there for ever and a day. It is correct that my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has to make his decision in due course. He will examine the proposals carefully to make sure that they represent the best way forward for health services in Cornwall. On underfunding, we accept that the NHS needs more investment. That is precisely why the comprehensive spending review is geared and designed to make sure that the health service has the resources it needs.

I hope that the hon. Gentleman will welcome very much what the Government have done in Europe to try to make sure that Cornwall, with its special circumstances, is treated as an area in its own right for the purposes of regional aid. That is a different topic, but we are trying to do our best for the people of Cornwall and will carry on doing so.

Forward to