GP funding cut by £250m since 2010, new figures reveal

Real terms spending on general practice has fallen £250m since the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition took power in 2010, House of Commons Library research has revealed.

The figures, commissioned by the Labour party, showed real-terms general practice funding had fallen from £9.185bn in 2009/10 to £8.939bn in 2014/15.

Real-terms spending per head of the population fell from £176 in 2009/10 to £165 in 2014/15, the data show.

Labour party analysis of official data also revealed that half a million more people struggled to get a timely GP appointment last year than the previous year. More than 14m patients waited a week or more to see or speak to a GP, or didn’t get an appointment at all the last time they tried in 2015, the analysis revealed, compared to 13.8m the year before.

GP services in crisis

Shadow health secretary Heidi Alexander said: ‘More than five years of David Cameron’s government has left the NHS in meltdown and GP services in crisis.

‘Millions more patients are struggling to see their family doctor and cuts to funding mean this situation is likely to get worse, not better.

‘David Cameron talks about a seven-day NHS, but the reality is he is failing to deliver a five-day NHS and patient care is suffering as a result.

‘The Tories need to start taking some responsibility for this situation. Rather than standing by and doing nothing, we need to see a proper plan for improving the NHS and ensuring patients get the care they need, when they need it.’

A Conservative health spokesman said 'This is disingenuous from a Labour party that pledged £5.5 billion less for the NHS than the Government at the general election. Thanks to a strong economy, as part of our £10billion investment we are putting an extra £220 million into the new GP contract – and will be saying more about improving GP services very soon.

'We are making it easier for patients to see their GP at a time that suits them by boosting the workforce and bringing general practice into the 21st century with phone and video appointments, so all patients can have quick, convenient access to a GP.'

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