Prime Minister announces extra £135m for Norfolk and Suffolk NHS frontline services
PUBLISHED: 07:46 05 August 2019 | UPDATED: 12:05 05 August 2019
Health services across Norfolk and Suffolk will benefit from a £135m funding boost as part of the prime minister's £1.8bn cash injection for the NHS.
Boris Johnson announced on Sunday that 20 hospitals are set to share £850m of new funding to upgrade outdated facilities and equipment.
The prime minister will also confirm a £1bn boost to NHS capital spending.
The health services to benefit from the cash boost in our region include:
- The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) - £69.7m to provide diagnostic and assessment centres in Norwich, Great Yarmouth and King's Lynn to aid rapid diagnosis and assessment of cancer and non-cancerous disease.
- Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust (NSFT) - £40m to build four new hospital wards in Norwich, providing 80 beds.
- South Norfolk CCG - £25.2m to develop and improve primary care services across Norfolk and Waveney.
Mark Davies, NNUH chief executive, said: "This is fantastic news for patients throughout Norfolk and Waveney Valley. The £70m funding will transform patient services establishing a major Diagnostic Assessment Centre here at the Norfolk and Norwich, together with new facilities at the James Paget and Queen Elizabeth Hospitals. So this is a real team effort.
"These centres will build capacity to support earlier cancer diagnosis in particular lung, prostate and colorectal cancers and will have a real impact on cancer outcomes and improved patient experience through earlier treatment.
"This will establish diagnostic radiology capacity at a level more aligned to future demand, provide more 'one stop' clinics delivering shorter patient pathways and same day diagnostic reporting.
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"This funding will help improve and save more patients' lives."
Patricia Hewitt, independent chairman of Norfolk and Waveney STP, said: "This is wonderful news for the people of Norfolk and Waveney and will enable us to make badly needed improvements to the services we can offer patients as well as improving conditions for many of our wonderful NHS staff."
Melanie Craig, chief officer of the five clinical commissioning groups in Norfolk and Waveney and executive lead of Norfolk and Waveney STP said: "We are absolutely delighted by this news. This money represents a significant investment in health and care services for the people of Norfolk and Waveney and will help drive forward improvements in patient care that we are all working as a system to achieve."
Liberal Democrat MP for North Norfolk Norman Lamb welcomed the news and said the funding was "long overdue".
He said it was "unreasonable" for Norfolk to be left out from the last round of capital funding, adding: "It's good news that what we are getting the money we have campaigned for."
But he said he was cynical about the timing of the announcement, adding: "We are now in the pre-election period and the government is splashing the cash in order to win the votes."
The £1.8b funding is in addition to the extra £33.9b the NHS is set to receive every year by 2023/24.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock, MP for West Suffolk, will also set out further changes to the NHS pension scheme to support senior doctors and GPs taking on extra shifts.
He said: "I love the NHS - and so do the millions of taxpayers and their families cared for by our NHS every month. We owe it to them to make sure they can get the best treatment in the best hospitals.
"On top of the extra £33.9b a year we are giving the NHS, today [Sunday} we are making a downpayment for the future of NHS buildings and facilities, with a £1.8b fund to revitalise our hospitals and immediate funding for bigger wards, better mental health units, and state of the art children's hospitals in areas that need them the most."
Mr Johnson said: "Our NHS is the pride of Britain - but we have to look after it in the same way it looks after us.
"So we're investing a huge £135m in frontline services across Norfolk and Suffolk - creating more beds, improving access to GPs and primary care, and giving clinicians the resources they need to spot cancer more quickly."