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Election Health Roundup

By June 11, 2024No Comments

The last few days has seen the release of both the Conservatives’ and Lib Dems’ manifestos, containing key pledges on health and life sciences.

Conservatives

The Conservative Party’s manifesto, released on Tuesday, has specifically promised improvements for diagnostics in the NHS. The party has pledged to invest £3.4 billion in new diagnostic technology, roll out new digital health checks to 250,000 more people every year, and expand HIV opt-out testing in emergency departments in England.

They have reiterated their commitment to building 40 new hospitals by 2030 and increase NHS spending above inflation in each year of the next Parliament.

On life sciences, the Conservatives will implement a new medtech pathway, increase public spending on R&D to £22 billion a year, maintain R&D tax reliefs, and deliver the Advanced Manufacturing Plan.

The party have also committed to providing a greater choice of services for patients, constitutionally amend the NHS to improve health inequalities in rural and coastal communities, and reduce the number of managers to inject £550 million into frontline services.

Health infrastructure will also be increased further, by building or modernising 250 GP services and creating a further 50 Community Diagnostics Centres. Pharmacy First and Women’s Health Hubs would also be expanded.

To solve the workforce crisis, Rishi Sunak’s party will employ 92,000 more nurses and 28,000 more doctors in the NHS than in 2023 by the end of the next Parliament.

Lib Dems 

The Lib Dems’ manifesto was the first of the three major parties to be released, having been unveiled on Monday.

Like the Conservatives, the Lib Dems have also made promises on diagnostics, stating that they will implement a ten-year Strategic Diagnostics Plan.

Significant funding for the NHS would be secured by a change to capital gains tax, raising an additional £5bn for the health service.

The party has pledged to introduce a new screening programme for those at highest risk, employ 8,000 more GPs to guarantee appointments within seven days (or one day if urgent), and develop a digital strategy for tech-enabled lives. A ten-year NHS staff retention plan will also be conceived as well as a Race Equality Strategy to address health inequalities.

Social care has been put at the heart of the Lib Dems’ campaign, with Ed Davey promising greater investment to ensure patients can be discharged from hospital sooner.

On life sciences, the party seeks to re-establish the Industrial Strategy Council and put it on a statutory footing, invest at least 3% of GDP into R&D by 2030 (rising to 3.5% by 2034), and seek a comprehensive mutual recognition agreement with the European Medicines Agency.

The Lib Dems have also pledged to develop a digital strategy for tech-enabled lives, ring-fence budgets which enable the adoption of innovative digital tools, and expand virtual wards and invest in technology that allows treatment at or close to home.

We eagerly await the release of Labour’s manifesto later on in the week.

Ben Kemp