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Nia Griffith MP was in Parliament on Friday, which is normally a constituency day, in order to support Clive Efford’s NHS Bill. Nia explains why:

“ We are rightly proud of our NHS, founded by Welshman Aneurin Bevan and admired worldwide. But in England it’s under threat from a Tory-led government which puts privatisation before patient care.

Now more than ever we need action to save our UK NHS. That’s why I’m backing Labour MP Clive Efford’s Bill which would set tough controls on privatisation and scrap competition frameworks so patients will always be put first.

Health in Wales is run by the Welsh Government, and our Labour Welsh Government is NOT going down the Tories’ route of privatisation. Nevertheless, what happens in England can affect patients from Wales. Just as patients from England come to the world class burns unit at Morriston, so patients from Wales go to specialist centres in England – like the Christie’s cancer hospital in Manchester which also serves North Wales. There are also 15,000 people who live on the Welsh side of the Wales-England border but who are registered with a GP in England and they would be affected. ( Incidentally there are also 20,000 people who live on the English side of the border but who are registered with a Welsh GP and get their treatment from the Welsh NHS)

The NHS in England has never been more vulnerable than under the present government. The Tories wasted £3 billion on an unnecessary and damaging top-down NHS reorganisation. They also forced hospitals to open themselves up to a privatisation agenda which prioritises spending on competition lawyers and tendering exercises instead of on patient care.

Labour will ensure that the NHS once again serves patients first and prioritises spending on much-needed doctors and nurses instead of letting private companies cherry-pick the most profitable NHS services, regardless of patient need.