On 9 November, Boris Johnson tweeted an election promise that “there will be 6,000 more doctors” in the NHS if the Conservatives remain in power.
However, he probably didn’t anticipate the backlash that revealing this ‘policy’ would spark.
Doctors were swift to tear Johnson’s ‘promises’ apart:
The NHS is ~11,000 Drs short.
1. Where will you suddenly source 6000 Drs from?
2. This will still leave the NHS ~5000 Drs short.@BorisJohnson – your promises are false. They simply represent your party cleaning up some of the mess created over 9 years. #marr #ridge #GE2019 https://t.co/31QedTgrnT
— Dr Lauren Gavaghan (@DancingTheMind) November 10, 2019
GP numbers are dropping for the first time since the 1960s.
The Tories cannot be trusted with our NHS.
— Dr Alex Gates #voteNHS 🌹 (@dr_alex_gates) November 9, 2019
Others were quick to point out how unrealistic this pledge from Johnson really is, particularly given how long it takes to train GPs:
Is there a bunch of extra GPs just kicking about waiting to be hired? How long does it take to train new ones? 10 years? Sounds like a realistic election promise… https://t.co/yyNHJIyLPF
— Michael Waltenberger (@MichaelWaltenb2) November 10, 2019
Some, meanwhile, haven’t forgotten previous, similar pledges on which the Tories never followed through:
The same promise for an extra 5000 or so Doctors was made by Jeremy Hunt a few years ago. Ask the doctors and they'll tell you he lied and the 5000 didnt materialise. #boris is doing exactly the same. NEVER EVER TRUST THIS BAFOON https://t.co/B5tur0uUpj
— ⚫StevieJay #PeoplesVote #StopBrexit #FBPE (@steviejay65) November 10, 2019
— Dr Philippa Whitford (@Dr_PhilippaW) November 10, 2019
Moreover, the Conservatives still continue to ignore the systemic issues their policies have caused within the NHS:
I’m a new GP
I’m already struggling with the workload & ⬆️demand
I cannot get my patients seen by some specialties within 1 year.
Explain to me how promising 50 million more appointments, when GP only receives 8.1% NHS budget, will ensure I remain a GP?
— Dr Alex Gates #voteNHS 🌹 (@dr_alex_gates) November 9, 2019
After a decade of Tory austerity, the damage caused to the NHS has turned it into a ‘leaky bucket’. Until the gaps are all filled, temporary fixes won’t work:
We dont have a shortage of registered healthcare professionals.
We have a shortage of healthcare professionals unwilling to work in what are becoming intolerable conditions.
The NHS needs to be better at retention, not keep filling an increasingly leaky bucket. https://t.co/daMuRFesDj
— Prof Alison Leary PhD RN MBE (@alisonleary1) November 10, 2019
“The truth is that even with tax changes not all of these [doctors] will now be coaxed back into working overtime. They have reassesssed their work-life balance and chosen life.” https://t.co/JXqWy1HiaR
— Claire Burroughs (@BurroughsClaire) November 10, 2019
Save our NHS
Many people have had quite enough of the decimation of the NHS under the current government:
Harrowing experience on doorstep this morning of an elderly lady in tears explaining how she waited 2 hours for an ambulance that never came as her son died in her arms.
We can't afford another five years of Tory government and underfunding of NHS services, people are dying.
— Seán Goral 🅾️ 🤝 (@sean_goral) November 9, 2019
It’s important to remember that this isn’t a single-issue election. While people may have varied views on Brexit, implementing changes to rebuild the NHS is something most people can get behind:
Spending £43,000 per household over 5 years on NHS, public services, preventing global warming & transforming the economy to work for the many, not the few, sounds like a bargain to me.
— Ally Fogg (@AllyFogg) November 10, 2019
Shadow Health Secretary Jon Ashworth reveals Labour’s manifesto pledge to reinstate NHS student bursaries worth £20,000 a year in maintenance and support, recruiting 24,000 nurses https://t.co/RhD4CQ0WI4
— Peter Stefanovic (@PeterStefanovi2) November 10, 2019
Johnson’s ongoing hospital PR visits haven’t been going so well. What’s more, NHS staff have recently been instructed not to share political opinions in the pre-election period. The Tories are obviously doing their best to silence criticism of the damage they’ve caused to the NHS. But it won’t be enough to fool the thousands of people who have been directly affected by debilitating cuts to their local hospitals and GP surgeries.
Featured image via YouTube/Guardian News
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