Labour has promised to invest a further £37bn in the NHS in England over the course of the next parliament if it wins power at the upcoming election.
The party said the investment would be paid for by a combination of corporation tax increases, raising income tax for the highest 5% of earners, tax increases in private medical insurance, and capital borrowing.
Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said the substantial and much needed investment would come with conditions attached, including “tougher new targets” to be met.
Standard of care at the NHS has declined for the past seven years as a combination of Tory austerity cuts, under-investment, and an ageing population have started to take their toll.
The moral of NHS doctors and nurses are at an all time low, with doctors and nurses both choosing to strike for the first time in their history in response to real-terms pay cuts and a failure from the department of health to manage rising demands on the service.
The recent ransomware hacking attack on NHS computers was the latest result of poorly thought out austerity cuts on the NHS. Thousands of people were affected by the widespread computer infection that took hold of some NHS systems over the weekend because the Conservative government chose to end security support for NHS computer systems last year despite numerous warnings it would leave IT systems vulnerable.
Labour says as much as £10bn of the pledged extra investment in the NHS could be used to upgrade the NHS’ ailing computer infrastructure.
The party says the investment would also take one million people off waiting lists by guaranteeing treatment within 18 weeks, guarantee no more than a four-hour wait in A&E, and improve patient care across the board.