JON TRICKETT: The NHS is what matters most to Hemsworth constituents

Pinderfields Hospital
Pinderfields Hospital

Over the past few months, my office, with the help of many fantastic volunteers, have been delivering newsletters and surveys to thousands of households across the Hemsworth constituency.

The purpose of this survey was to ask my constituents what issues mattered most to them and what they thought should be my campaigning priority for the coming year.

They’re my bosses and I’m here to represent their views and concerns. The response we received was fantastic and I would like to thank everyone who took the time to complete and return the survey.

The protection of our NHS was the standout issue. Equally, the vast majority of those who responded thought it should be my number one campaigning priority for the coming year. Sadly this doesn’t come as a surprise.

After seven years of Tory control, the NHS is in a dire state and the situation is getting worse. The government has failed to provide much needed funding to meet rising demand and an ageing population. This has resulted in NHS staff being pushed to the brink in trying to keep up their excellent service; but the Tory cuts are inevitably taking their toll. Cuts were made or threatened to at least 70 frontline NHS services between June and October 2017.

Locally the Mid Yorkshire NHS Trust has already had to cut £16m this year but might still be put into ‘special measures’ for not finding another £9m worth of savings.

This is a significant amount. To cut costs the trust has indicated it may have to reduce the A&E services at Pontefract further, which will put more communities at risk and more strain on Wakefield A&E department. This is while waiting times continue to grow and the trust struggles to fill staffing vacancies.

These are the reasons why my constituents ranked the NHS as their most important issue and why next year I will be running a campaign to protect and strengthen our NHS. 2018 will see the 70th year anniversary of the NHS and I want to use that opportunity to celebrate one of our greatest national achievements.

We should be celebrating the hard-work and dedication of the world-class staff in the NHS and pushing the Tories to finally give them the full and proper funding they need to carry on providing their vital services.

I will keep you updated with the progress of the NHS campaign in due course.

If you would like to get in touch with me about this issue, or any others that you would like to see me campaigning on, the give me a call on 01977 655695.

You can also drop into my constituency office at Moorthorpe Railway Station or email jtrickett@jontrickett.org.uk

Alternatively you can visit www.jontrickett.org.uk to keep up to date with my campaigns.