Conservatives predict polyclinics to close 1,700 practices

Plans for polyclinics would lead to the closure of up to 1,700 surgeries in England, according to an analysis by the Conservative party.

David Cameron
David Cameron

The total includes 1,091 in London (71 per cent of surgeries) and 609 in the rest of the country (9 per cent).

Conservative leader David Cameron told the King’s Fund thinktank today: ‘Gordon Brown is attempting to do what Nye Bevan never did - to nationalize general practice.'

A Conservative government would create a primary care-led NHS by giving GPs control over care budgets, he said. ‘There will always be one doctor in charge, and that's the doctor closest to the patient.’

Dr Stewart Drage, a GPC negotiator, told the Conservative leader: ‘What you said in your speech resonates pretty well with GPs in London.’

Mr Cameron also said that a Conservative government would formally make the NHS independent of government control, leaving the DoH to focus entirely on public health issues.

It would also give every hospital foundation status.

neil.durham@haymarket.com

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