The NHS is one of our proudest achievements. We will build on that legacy to ensure everyone receives the care they need.
We will fight any further privatisation of our NHS, and we will reverse existing privatisation inflicted by successive Westminster governments.
We will also properly fund the NHS. We will protect its future by investing in its infrastructure, improving A&E department waiting times and creating higher Intensive Care capacity. This will make sure everyone gets the care they need, even during challenges such as the Covid-19 pandemic, and will stop hospitals from having to choose between dealing with emergencies or delivering routine care.
We will abolish prescription charges, bringing services in the North in line with those in Scotland.
Dental, Hearing, and Visual Care
We will make free dental, hearing, and visual care part of the NHS. This will cover all dental services (like fillings), all hearing services (like hearing aids), and all opticians’ services (like glasses). These vital aspects of our health are currently overlooked, and they must be made available to those who cannot afford private care.
Our mental health services are currently underfunded, understaffed, and often unable to effectively treat complex cases. We will increase funding for mental health services on the NHS, and will improve access to a wide variety of options for mental health treatment by reversing the trend of pushing people into cheap Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. Because our mental health is just as important as our physical health and the two often overlap, we will also improve the integration between mental and physical healthcare.
We will increase funding for mental health treatment for NHS workers, many of whom are living with symptoms of mental illness (such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) due to working through the pandemic without sufficient support.
We will increase mental health provision in schools, and we will ensure every school has access to a full-time mental health nurse.
We will protect continued universal access to reproductive healthcare (including all forms of contraception and abortion) and will resist any attempts to restrict access to these services.
We will provide free menstruation products in all public buildings to tackle period poverty, following the example set by the Scottish Government.
We will increase funding for the provision of high-quality pre- and post- natal care to help those who want to have children, and we will also fund community support for new parents.
We will fund additional research to produce treatments for conditions that disproportionately affect those with female reproductive systems, such as cervical cancer and endometriosis. This will address a long-standing institutional bias in our medical system and ensure that everyone has their symptoms taken seriously. We will do the same for the side-effects of the menopause. Furthermore, we will provide additional funding to make existing treatments for these conditions and side-effects more widely available.
We will reform transgender healthcare by decentralising care to GPs and specialists under an informed-consent model: this will end the gatekeeping of Gender Identity Clinics, decreasing waiting times and improving access to high-quality care. We will also protect trans teens’ access to puberty blockers, which are a medically proven, safe and reversible way to give them time to decide whether they want to medically transition.