Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn is promising that the next Labour government will ensure the health service is “truly universal” by abolishing prescription charges in England, ensuring that vital drugs are available at prices that the National Health Service can afford and introducing free personal care to support older people so they can live independently with dignity in their own homes.
Visiting the Tudorken Pharmacy in Watford, with Sharon Hodgson MP, Shadow Health Minister and Chris Ostrowski, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Watford, the Labour Leader set out Labour’s plans to scrap prescription charges in England as part of the party’s plans to expand universalism in public services and tackle health inequalities.
Labour will introduce free personal care for older people, providing help with daily tasks such as getting in and out of bed, bathing and washing, and preparing meals in their own homes and residential care.
Labour also promised to take on the big pharmaceutical companies which deny life-saving and life-changing medicines to ill patients by charging “extortionate prices” for drugs.
• Secure affordable generic versions of patented medicines at a price that is affordable for the NHS;
• Make public funding for research conditional on the resulting drugs being priced affordably for all;
• Create a new publicly-owned generic drugs manufacturer to supply cheaper medicines to the NHS
Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn said:
“Healthcare is a human right. Nobody should be worried about being able to afford the medicines they need, and our NHS should not be priced out of providing the drugs people need because of pharmaceutical companies charging extortionate prices for medicines.
“The right to healthcare extends to the right to dignity and security in old age. Under the Tories, our social care sector is in a scandalous state, with one million people not getting the care they need. Labour will right this wrong and introduce personal care free at the point of use, extending state-funded care to hundreds of thousands more people.
“The next Labour government will ensure that our health service is truly universal by scrapping prescription charges, and taking on the big pharmaceutical companies so our healthcare system puts public health and ahead of private wealth.
“Labour will put public health ahead of private wealth to secure generic versions of patented medicines and create a new publicly-owned generic drugs manufacturer to supply cheaper medicines to our NHS – saving money and lives.”