Lib Dems Put Health and Social Care Reform “At the Heart” of Election Campaign

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Lib Dems Put Health and Social Care Reform “At the Heart” of Election Campaign

Health and social care reform is the cornerstone of the Liberal Democrats’ General Election manifesto, as declared by party leader Sir Ed Davey. Promising to “transform” British politics, Sir Ed unveiled the 116-page document, “For A Fair Deal,” which lays out the party’s ambitious plans to overhaul the country’s healthcare system and address social care challenges.

Lib Dems Put Health And Social Care Reform “at The Heart” Of Election Campaign

At a press briefing on Monday, Sir Ed underscored the urgent need to address the health crisis plaguing the National Health Service (NHS). “We will tackle the health crisis from top to bottom,” he asserted, outlining measures to reduce the NHS backlog, increase dental appointment availability, and alleviate the strain on healthcare professionals.

Central to the Lib Dems’ health strategy is a pledge to guarantee patients the right to see a General Practitioner (GP) within seven days, or within 24 hours for urgent needs, backed by the recruitment of 8,000 additional GPs. The party also aims to improve cancer survival rates by ensuring that 100% of patients begin treatment within 62 days of an urgent referral.

Further health commitments include reforming and boosting funding for the NHS dental contract to ensure timely access for those requiring urgent dental care.

The manifesto promises transformative changes to social care, with Sir Ed vowing to introduce free personal care for elderly and disabled adults. The party also plans to overhaul the Carer’s Allowance system, expanding access to provide better support for unpaid family carers. Additionally, the Lib Dems propose a statutory right to paid carers’ leave and regular respite breaks, alongside stopping the pursuit of overpaid carers’ benefits.

Addressing the cost-of-living crisis, Sir Ed pledged “long-term help” through measures such as an emergency Home Energy Upgrade programme to cut energy bills, a National Food Strategy to control rising food prices, and prudent economic management to stabilise mortgage rates. The party also committed to maintaining the triple lock on the state pension, aligning with similar pledges from Labour and the Conservatives.

A notable environmental initiative from the manifesto is the introduction of a “sewage tax” on the £2.2 billion annual profits of water companies. This move aims to curb the discharge of sewage into rivers and seas, which has occurred over a million times in the past three years. The Lib Dems argue that the financial burden of addressing this issue should fall on water companies rather than taxpayers.

As the election campaign heats up, the Liberal Democrats are positioning themselves as the party capable of delivering substantial health and social care reforms, emphasising that “the Conservatives have got to go” and that the Lib Dems are ready to lead the charge for change.

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