Grantham and Stamford MP joins push for NHS funding review

MP Nick Boles
MP Nick Boles

Nick Boles has repeated his calls for a specific NHS tax to pay for the NHS and social care

The Grantham and Stamford MP has added his name to a list of 98 MPs from differing parties demanding Prime Minister Theresa May sets up a Parliamentary Commission into its long-term funding.

The commission would look at whether to raise taxes or whether they should be ring-fenced, with all the extra funds raised going into health care.

The move follows health secretary Jeremy Hunt on Sunday calling for a ten year funding deal for the NHS and a hypotheticated tax, where revenues raised are set aside for it.

Mr Boles yesterday tweeted his support for the letter sent to Number 10.

The MP said: “Delighted to join so many MPs from all parties demanding a Parliamentary Commission to devise a long term solution to the funding of the NHS and social care.”

The letter signed by the 98 MPs had said: “The system-wide pressures over recent weeks cannot be fully attributed to flu and the cold snap. They also reflect more serious and underlying issues facing the NHS, public health and social care.

“These systems are overstretched, poorly integrated and are no longer able to keep pace with rising demand and the cost pressures of new drugs and technologies.”

Recently, in his book “Squate Deal”, Mr Boles had argued for the NHS to be given its own, standalone funding stream.

He said: “Taxpayers ought to know how much it costs to enjoy the right to free healthcare. Political parties should have to set out clearly their plans for the NHS, and explain what implications they will have for the funding that will be sought from taxpayers.

“This conversation would take healthcare outside the general debate about overall levels of public expenditure, taxation and borrowing. It would become possible for a political party to argue for substantial cuts in public expenditure and promise tax cuts off the back of them, while accepting that public funding for healthcare needed to rise.”