Johnson sets out plans for NHS25th September 2007
Health Secretary Alan Johnson has outlined plans to make the NHS more user-friendly for patients.
Addressing the Labour conference, he said patients should be treated close to home, GP surgeries should open â€śat times and in locations that suit the patient, not the practiceâ€? and pharmacies, sports centres and high street walk-in centres could do more to provide primary care effectively.
With health expected to be a key issue at the next general election, Mr Johnson outlined plans to tackle health inequalities and boost the fight against hospital infections.
The Health Secretary was also critical of the Conservative Party, saying at worst they were a â€śmajor riskâ€? to the NHS and were â€śunfit to govern.â€?
He said Labour had increased investment, staff and survival rates in the NHS but he said the focus now had to move away from â€śtop-down structural changeâ€? to concentrate on better patient care.
Mr Johnson said it was unacceptable where people in poor areas were likely to die younger than those in richer areas and more action was needed on tackling obesity in children and adults.
He also wants a regulator to tackle hygiene standards in NHS and private hospitals and while progress had been made on MRSA the battle against clostridium difficile â€śmust be intensified.â€?
He also pledged personal safety alarms for staff with too many hospital workers suffering intimidation and violence at work.
Shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley dismissed the announcements as â€śdelayed, diluted and duplicatedâ€? while Liberal Democrat health spokesman Norman Lamb branded Mr Johnsonâ€™s speech â€śgimmickry and re-spun policy.â€?
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Title: Johnson sets out plans for NHS
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 4197
Date Added: 25th Sep 2007