Here’s his reply

He replied promptly. I don’t expect to agree with him on everything – I’m Labour and he’s a Tory. But I am rather disappointed that he chose to signpost me to a media article rather than  finding out ‘from the horses mouth’ what the government position actually is on this Inquiry. I have replied to this effect.
Dear Emma  
Thank you for taking the time to write at length on this important subject.
 
I note your involvement in dementia services, which I applaud; and your experience as a Parliamentary candidate. Given the latter, you will be aware that the press sometimes ‘run away’ with things discussed in the Westminster village. I am not entirely clear myself on where we are with this ‘enquiry’. The following piece seems to suggest that it was not a formal Government enquiry, particularly the last two paragraphs:http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/the-principle-of-a-free-taxpayerfunded-nhs-must-be-questioned-says-tory-health-minister-10395991.html
 
Either way, there is no doubt in my mind that a) as a Government we are committed an NHS free at the point of delivery, funded to the amount requested by NHS England with a further £8bn by 2020; but that b) when talking about long-term pressures it makes sense to be open minded. There is rather a temptation it seems to me in parts of our polity to suggest that if anyone so much as question the sustainability of funding, they must want some harsh private system dominated by American conglomerates who will list our hospitals on the stock market and laugh while the poor and vulnerable go untreated. The reality is that we should want whatever policies will deliver the best care. There seems strong consensus across the House of Commons that this is best achieved by a free NHS. I personally do not see that changing but let us not rule out innovation or blue sky thinking which would be to the detriment of debate.
 
Thanks again for taking the time to write.
 
Regards,
James
James Cartlidge
Member of Parliament for South Suffolk
020 7219 4875
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One response to this post.

  1. I asked my MP to deny or confirm that the Inquiry is government policy – ie. to seek out and reference an official government response rather than signposting me to a media report.

    He has replied (very promptly) suggesting that the whole proposal was media speculation.

    The Inquiry was not media speculation. Granted, in the Hansard record of the debate that took place on 9th July (http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld201516/ldhansrd/text/150709-0002.htm) , Lord Prior supports the tax-payer funding model for the NHS before going on to talk about setting up the Inquiry. But I’m no closer to knowing whether or not the government is allowing parliamentary time and resource to be spent debating alternative funding models for the NHS – or whether there is an underlying motive for them to do so.

    Reply

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