HC Deb 03 December 1985 vol 88 c212W
Mr. Alfred Morris

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services what consideration he has given to the joint policy statement on National Health Service expenditure sent to him by the British Medical Association, the Institute of Health Service Administrators and the Royal College of Nursing; what response he is making; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Fowler

[pursuant to the reply, 19 November 1985, c. 153]: Since the report was received details have been announced of the Government's plans for increased spending over the next three years in my reply of 12 November to my hon. Friend the Member for Surrey, South-West (Mrs. Bottomley) at columns 162–163. Current spending on the hospital and community health services will increase by £650 million in 1986–87 to nearly £10.3 billion. Health authorities will also have available their growing cost improvement programmes which contribute significantly to the Health Service's ability to meet the pressures it faces—a point largely ignored by the report. Authorities will have to meet pay and price increases from within their resources but they should also be able to provide for more old people and improve services in line with Government objectives. Further increases of £470 million and £440 million are planned in 1987–88 and 1988–89, bringing total spending to £11.2 billion by the end of the period.

My right hon. Friend the Minister for Health plans to meet the sponsoring bodies to discuss with them their observations and the Government's decisions.