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Health Care (Sunderland)

Volume 486: debated on Wednesday 14 January 2009

The Petition of residents of Sunderland and others,

Declares that they support their doctors in urging the Government to listen to local people and invest in every practice in their city to improve the health care of all patients in Sunderland, rather than in a small number of new practices which may benefit only a small percentage of the population.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Secretary of State for Health to review and further invest in the funding of all NHS GP practices in Sunderland to ensure that health care improvements benefit the whole population.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.—[Presented by Bill Etherington, Official Report, 8 December 2008; Vol. 485, c. 380 .]

[P000292]

Observations from the Secretary of State for Health:

Although the Department of Health provides strategic leadership to the NHS and social care organisations in England, it is for local NHS organisations to plan, develop and improve services for local people. Therefore, any proposals for improvements to services are matters to be decided locally.

The Government is investing record amounts in GP services (an increase of over 50 per cent. since 2003-04) and there is a record number of GPs (19 per cent. more than in 1997). This investment has secured major improvements in access to services and in the quality of care for people with long-term conditions. Public satisfaction with GP services is generally high.