Save Our NHS

The nosedive of real terms funding of our National Health Service by the Conservative party has crippled the provision of healthcare in England. No one can deny the impact of the pandemic. However, equally, no one can deny the impact of the Tories neglect of the NHS. Some of the experiences that you have had when struggling to access sufficient NHS healthcare are issues that I can personally relate to.

People in Mid Cheshire have been struggling to access emergency health care in good time. If the wait between calling 999 and an Ambulance arriving within an appropriate timescale wasn't difficult enough, the wait once admitted to A&E is even worse. 
 

43,000 people waited more than the target of 4 hours to be seen in Leighton Hospital in 2023. That's an increase of 96% compared to 2019. At its very worst, over 4,000 patients waited to be seen after 12 hours in 2023. In 2019, the number was ZERO.

I will be calling on this Tory government to reverse their planned real terms NHS funding cuts of £5bn over the next two years, to allow our NHS to reverse this dangerous trend.

Ambulance travelling at speed

Like you, I know what it’s like to experience an agonising wait for an ambulance. When I came home from work one morning over a year ago, my youngest son, aged just 3 months old, was struggling to breathe and appeared very pale. As any parent would, I immediately rang 999 expecting an ambulance to arrive within minutes. I was told we had to make our own way there. Having to put our baby into a car seat whilst experiencing breathing difficulties, put the fear of God into me as we rushed to Leighton Hospital. Thankfully, it was a case of bronchiolitis which was perfectly treatable, but at the time, I was furious that in a matter of life and death, the emergency services couldn’t help us due to lack of resources.

Jack Price-Harbach

Mid Cheshire is a dentistry desert for adults in desperate need of oral healthcare. 

Of the 13 dental practices within my constituency, just TWO are taking on new NHS patients over the age of 18. Those two practices, along with a third in Northwich are currently accepting NHS patients under the age of 17. 

This lack of availability is due to our dentists not being properly compensated for their work. As part of our fair deal, we will reform the NHS dentists contract so that dentists are properly paid for the time and skill invested in more complex and time consuming procedures. 

Dentist with patient

Just before Christmas 2022, I was experiencing a horrendously painful toothache. After moving to Northwich, I didn’t register with a new dentist before the pandemic, so getting an emergency NHS appointment was practically impossible. The pain was so unbearable, I went private. Had the dentist been able to extract my tooth immediately, it would have cost £80. Unfortunately, my tooth was too infected to extract, and I needed a course of antibiotics first to clear it. As I needed another appointment I ended up paying £260 for the procedure. I was lucky that I had that disposable income to hand to get rid of my toothache, but many families are dependent on NHS dentistry. Going private simply isn’t an option for them and it’s those families who I’ll be fighting for in Parliament.

Jack Price-Harbach

With life becoming more challenging in recent years for many people, there has never been such a heightened awareness of how precarious our mental health can be. Despite tireless campaigning from several organisations, mental health is not seen as a priority until it is too late, particularly for young people. Children's mental health services are only available to those in the absolute depths of a crisis because resources are so scarse. That's why as part of our fair deal, we will ensure that every school has a qualified mental health professional. 

Two women talking in a counselling session

I’ve no qualms about my openness and honesty regarding my mental health. I think if I truly want to be representative of my constituents, young men in particular, I think it’s important to share my experiences. I’ve had depression on and off since 2010, after having a mental breakdown in the final year of my University degree course at Liverpool. Since then I’ve been through many peaks and troughs but after having some counselling last year, I’m currently awaiting a formal diagnosis for ADHD. I never thought such a condition could apply to me. I want to use my personal experiences to challenge misconceptions people may hold about mental health issues and to increase the availability of mental health practitioners for everyone.

Jack Price-Harbach

Our Social Care is in crisis. We have an aging population and an increasing demand for services. Unfortunately, it remains incredibly expensive, under funded and piles pressure on hospital beds due to insufficient provisions available.

I believe that our party leader and a carer himself, Ed Davey, is best placed to explain how we as Liberal Democrats want to transform social care:

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