Budget: £6 Billion to the NHS, But It Isn’t All Going Where You’d Think

In a budget announcement that received staunch criticism from Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt issued a hopeful £6 billion to fund the NHS, but the majority isn’t going to where you’d think.

Hunt Announces Budget

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Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced the much-anticipated pre-election budget on Wednesday, which has already received intense criticism from Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and members of the Tory Party.

“Rishi Recession”

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The announcement revealed Hunt’s “long-term” plan to bounce the country back from its recent recession, recently dubbed, the “Rishi Recession” by Starmer.

Budget Breakdown

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In the announcement, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt disclosed a multi-billion-pound budget allocation to revamp the NHS IT system, promising a total of almost £6 billion to the NHS as a whole.

£3.5 Billion for IT System Upgrades

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Of the £6 billion, Hunt allocated a staggering  £3.5 billion towards the IT system, which he insists would put the NHS on the path to competing with the world’s best healthcare systems.

Overcrowded NHS Needs New IT System

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According to Hunt, the overcrowded National Health Service will benefit from an updated IT system, relieving the huge burden currently forced upon NHS staff in the UK’s hospitals.

Price is Steep But Necessary

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Hunt insisted that to compete with the world’s best, the price of £3.5 billion is justifiable, ‘The investment needed to modernise NHS IT systems so they’re as good as the best in the world costs £3.4billion,” he said.

A Worthy Investment

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Hunt insisted that by improving the IT system and lowering NHS waiting time for patients, “It helps unlock £35 billion of savings – 10 times that amount,” he said.

Efficiency Boost

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The Chancellor stressed that the investment would alleviate the burden on NHS staff, “With that new investment, we will slash the 13 million hours lost by doctors and nurses every year through outdated IT systems,” he said.

AI Integration for Faster Diagnoses

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Part of the plan involves leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) to faster diagnose diseases like cancer, thus potentially leading to larger survival rates, along with helping doctors to fill in forms faster.

AI Could “Halve” Form Filling Time

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Hunt acknowledged how important it could be to exploit AI for the better, “We will cut down and potentially halve form-filling by doctors using AI,” he noted.

AI Could Save “Thousands of Lives”

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Hunt insisted that the plan to use AI would lead to “improvements to help doctors read MRI and CT scans more accurately and quickly,” resulting in “saving thousands of lives.”

Hunt’s Personal Touch

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Jeremy Hunt’s brother, Charlie, recently passed away from a rare form of cancer, so Hunt took the opportunity to dedicate the decision to him, saying Charlie would have been “delighted” with the news.

Hunt’s “Hope” Never Lost

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Hunt claimed that he never lost “hope” that his brother could pull through after he was diagnosed with a rare, terminal cancer at just 50 years old, eventually succumbing to the disease three years later.

Hunt’s Brother a “Tireless Fundraiser”

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Charlie Hunt raised over £140,000 for Sarcoma UK after his diagnosis, showing his commitment to helping others facing the same heartbreak as him, with Sarcoma UK calling him a “lovely man and a tireless fundraiser.”

Extra £2.5 Billion Announced

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Along with the £3.5 billion focussed on improving the NHS It system, another £2.5 billion was announced to help alleviate pressures faced by NHS staff and “meet pressures for the coming year.”

App Plans Cause Criticism

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Hunt also announced that “Other NHS IT improvements include improving the health service’s app,” which has come under scrutiny after the perceived failure of the Covid “Track and Trace” app.

£37 Billion Budget Blown

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The Track and Trace app was developed to help identify individuals who came into contact with someone diagnosed with Covid-19, which the government developed using a £37 billion budget.

Watchdog Slams Overpriced App

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One report from a Commons spending Watchdog concluded that the app “has not achieved its main objective to help break chains of Covid-19 transmission.”

Starmer Slams “Last Desperate Act”

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Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer branded Hunt’s budget announcement as the “last desperate act of a party that has failed,” while Labour sits 27 points ahead of the Tories in the polls.

Hunt Hopeful for Future

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Despite the criticism, Hunt has insisted that his budget is “Absolutely not” the “last throw of the dice” and insists the economy is “turning a corner.”

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Oscar Davies, an expert in US and UK politics and sports, is renowned for his sharp and engaging writing style, appealing to a broad spectrum of readers.

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