Suffolk:Government spends less on health

Wednesday, 13 June, 2007

PATIENTS in Suffolk are getting less than the national average cash levels from the government, figures reveal today.

Despite being around £30.9million in debt, the Suffolk Primary Care Trust (PCT) is given less per head of population for health care than other trusts.

House of Commons figures show that in 2007/08 Suffolk's NHS funding per head of the population is 88pc of the national average.

Suffolk will receive £1,227 per head compared with a national average of £1,388.

David Ruffley MP for Bury St Edmunds, has today spoken out against the government's 'under-funding.' He is due to meet the Suffolk PCT on Friday to discuss the financial position.

He said: 'Once again this government is short-changing the people of Suffolk and under-funding the NHS in the county.

'The stark reality of this neglect can be seen in the fact that regionally we now have 722 fewer hospital beds than we did three years ago.

'Our hard working doctors, nurses and support staff are not getting the resources they need to do their job and it is the people of Suffolk who are suffering as a result.'

The Norfolk PCT's figure is £1,295, while the North Essex figure is £1,373.

Mr Ruffley has called for the East of England Strategic Health Authority - the body which sits between the government and the PCT - to be scrapped, branding it ineffective.