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New Hospitals and Health Centres: Funding

Volume 733: debated on Tuesday 6 June 2023

We are investing record sums in the NHS estate, with more than £20 billion in the largest hospital building programme and, in addition, a further £1 billion to put an extra 5,000 bed capacity into NHS trusts, and more than £5 billion as part of our elective recovery plan, including for diagnostic centres and new surgical hubs.

The Secretary of State is aware of the £30 million bid that we have submitted to redevelop Thornbury health centre. That new facility would provide GP appointments, more out-patient services, more mental health support and a proactive frailty hub to keep elderly residents in their homes for longer with the support that they need. Thornbury is a growing town and it desperately needs the new facility. Can the Secretary of State update me on the timescales for the outcome of our bid, and will he meet me to discuss it in more detail?

I know that is an extremely important scheme. My hon. Friend will know that the costs have risen considerably from when it was first proposed, and it is therefore right that we look at embracing modern methods of construction and at whether a rebuild option is the way forward. I am very happy to meet him to discuss it.

The Government have failed to support the East London NHS Foundation Trust’s bid for a new hospital, despite the fact that it has the capital to build the much-needed Bedford health village. We have a mental ill-health epidemic among adults and children. Does the Minister agree that it is reckless to expect my constituents to wait many months and to travel miles to access in-patient mental health services?

The hon. Gentleman might have missed in the announcement we made a couple of weeks ago that we are building three new mental health hospitals as part of the hospital building programme. That is also a part of our wider support for mental health, including the extra £2.3 billion of funding compared with four years ago.

May I thank my right hon. Friend for the rapid progress he is making on the hospital building programme? Can he confirm that he will shortly be announcing a full and final programme of funding so that we can deliver a superb new state-of-the-art hospital in Hillingdon, where, I am proud to say, enabling works are already under way?

I am delighted to hear that the enabling works are under way. I know that my right hon. Friend has championed both Hillingdon and the new hospital building programme. I am sure that he will welcome the investment of more than £20 billion. I can confirm that Hillingdon will be fully funded. In addition to the enabling works, we are working closely with the trust to incorporate the Hospital 2.0 design into Hillingdon, as we will at Whipps Cross, as part of taking that programme forward.

Chorley is extremely important, Mr Speaker—I am very sighted on that.

Our commitment is that that is part of the new hospital building programme. We said that it is part of the rolling programme, so it will not be completed by 2030 but we are keen to get work started on it, and that is exactly what we will be discussing with Members of Parliament in the weeks ahead.