Politicians clash over hospital defecit

West Mid sees rise in patients and debt

Alexander Northcote, the Conservative's Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Brentford & Isleworth has condemned the Government's handling of the NHS, following a report that the West Middlesex University Hospital is a staggering £2.5 million in debt.

Pressure group, London Health Emergency, has highlighted the financial trouble at the hospital. Last year managers had to turn away 15 critical patients.

Northcote said: "The West Middlesex is supposed to be a gleaming example of how the NHS has improved under this Government. But while the doctors and nurses are working hard, the hospital is in a financial mess.

"Despite an increase in spending of 37.5 per cent since 1999/00, activity levels in hospitals have risen by only 4.8 per cent as measured by completed hospital inpatient treatment.

"Labour has taxed more and spent more, but failed to deliver the improvements they promised."

However Ann Keen, Labour MP for Brentford and Isleworth, was quick to defend the hosital and point the finger at the Conservatives. She praised the staff at the West Middlesex Hospital for their tremendous work and commitment following the report by pressure group, London Health Emergency.

Ann Keen said:

"I will take no lectures from the Tories as they continually vote against any further investment in public services. Previous Tory MP's for Brentford and Isleworth have even been health ministers and did nothing for our local hospital. They need to seriously look at the how the deficit arrived in the first place."

"I remember very well seeing nurses with buckets collecting money for vital A&E equipment in the 1990's outside Brentford Football Club on a Saturday. We must never return to those days."

"The Labour Government is committed to the NHS and investment and reform whilst the Tory party supports £18 billion worth of cuts to key services.

24 March 2004

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