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Tories call for more NHS cash to be targeted at prevention

13 January 2010

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Shadow Health Secretary Andrew Lansley has hit out at Labour’s health policy in a heated exchange in the House of Commons, during which he called for “less bureaucracy, more prevention” in future policy.

Mr Lansley (pictured) said that NHS funds should be channelled to support preventative health programmes in some areas and cut down on management costs, prompting a fierce rebuttal from the health secretary, Andy Burnham, who accused his opposite number of having “completely abandoned” his previous position on NHS funding.

Mr Burnham also accused the shadow health secretary of playing second fiddle to David Cameron when it came to drawing up Tory health policy.

Mr Lansley claimed the PCT in Mr Burnham’s Leigh constituency was spending £39 per head on management costs but just £31 per head on its preventative “healthy individuals” programme.

Calling on Mr Burnham to explain the figures, he demanded: “What is needed is higher public health budgets to go to the areas with the poorest health. Less bureaucracy, more prevention.”

The health secretary replied: “You have accused me, over the past five years, of giving too much money to those areas. Now you have completely abandoned that pledge.

“But it would appear it’s not you, it’s your leader that’s writing your health policy.”

Copyright © Press Association 2010

Department of Health