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Liberal Democrats will invest over £5m in Cornwall to bring care closer to home

April 9, 2015 10:47 AM

Patients in Cornwall will benefit from over £5.3m of new investment per year under a new "Care Closer to Home" fund launched by the Liberal Democrats today, Sat 4th April.

The Liberal Democrats "Care Closer to Home" fund would safeguard the NHS by investing in care in people's own homes, GP surgeries, care homes and community clinics. This will help people to stay healthier for longer and avoid hospital admissions. The total package amounts to a staggering £2.5bn of investment, £500m a year over the next five years.

463 GPs and half a million people in Cornwall are set to benefit from the new Care Closer to Home fund with up to £12m of additional investment to be provided for NHS Kernow, NHS North, East, West Devon, and NHS South Devon and Torbay Clinical Commissioning Groups.

The Chair of Cornwall Council's health and adult care committee and Lib Dem candidate for Truro and Falmouth, Simon Rix, said:

"Often people can't get out of hospital because there is no care home place for them or their own home hasn't been properly adapted. And many people resort to going to A&E because their GP surgery is closed.

"Our new Care Closer to Home fund will solve many of these problems."

Liberal Democrat Health Minister Norman Lamb added:

"We want to build a fairer society and that means better care closer to home for everyone. We are backing the NHS and that's why we are announcing over £16m new funding for 1.6 million people in Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

"I am calling on all parties to match our commitment to get the NHS the £8bn a year extra funding NHS bosses say it needs by the end of the next parliament to safeguard it for the future. I am also calling on all parties to join us in an open, non partisan review of the health and care budget so that we can safeguard our NHS for the future".

The £500m annual "Care Closer to Home" fund will help to deliver the vision set out in Simon Steven's Five Year Forward View for the NHS. This will include:

GP surgeries working together to provide care traditionally given in hospitals such as X rays and other diagnostic tests and procedures, so people don't have to travel into hospital.

Joined up organisations involving hospitals, GPs, mental health and community services. These will make it easier for patients to get the right care, at the right time, in the right place.

Better access to GP surgeries by getting GPs to work together in 'federations' to resource weekend surgery duty, having more surgeries nearer A&E departments, having more chemists next to surgeries, and additional appointments being made available via email and skype.

More use of social prescribing so that people are helped to benefit from social activities like fishing or cookery clubs, or to do exercise or get access to nature.

Better health care in care homes so older people do not need to go into hospital unnecessarily and can get discharged from hospital more easily.
Patients will get more control over their care with shared budgets for their health and care needs.

This radical, bottom up approach will build on the success the Liberal Democrats in government have already achieved on joining up health and care services. Unlike Labour, who are dictating how many individual doctors and nurses should be recruited, the Liberal Democrats are backing the NHS to deliver better care and safeguard our NHS for the future.