General Election 2019: Derek Thomas on Health

I will continue to press for the close integration of health and care services, for more NHS dentists and better diagnostic services closer to home.

Improving services has been a priority for me. Since 2015 I have: held a West Cornwall Health Inquiry seeking the views of health professionals and others on what changes are necessary to better integrate services; hosted Health & Social Care Matters events to find out the concerns of local people; organised regular meetings of a group looking at ways to find a sustainable future for Edward Hain Hospital; met regularly with care home and domiciliary care managers to discuss the challenges facing the care sector; supported recruitment in the NHS by hosting an NHS+ Jobs Fair; and consistently pressed Government Ministers for fairer NHS funding in Cornwall.

Theresa May’s summer announcement of an extra £20bn a year for the NHS by 2023 was very welcome and already we are seeing greater investment in Cornwall – at Treliske, St Michael’s and West Cornwall hospitals. I am arguing that there should also be investment in health and social care hubs both on the mainland and on Scilly - indeed the Health Secretary has assured me that a hub on Scilly is under serious consideration.