The RCP has responded to the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement.
In response to the Autumn Statement, Dr John Dean, clinical vice president of the Royal College of Physicians, said: “We strongly welcome the Chancellor’s commitment to publishing a comprehensive workforce plan with independently verified forecasts for the number of doctors, nurses and other professionals that will be needed in 5, 10 and 15 years’ time to meet patients’ needs. The Royal College of Physicians was one of over 100 health and care organisations to write to the Chancellor today asking for this - we’re pleased that our calls have been heard. It is vital that the workforce plan, when it is published next year, comes with a clear commitment to provide the funding necessary to make this happen.
“While we await publication of the plan, our sights must be on the current challenges faced by doctors, particularly trainees, and other healthcare professionals. The £3.3bn promised for each of the next 2 years is welcome recognition that additional funding is required for the health service to deliver on its key priorities. Healthcare staff are working incredibly hard to manage the fallout from COVID-19 and tackle the backlog. It is vital they feel supported and valued, including by improving their working conditions.
“The rising cost-of-living will continue to have a significant impact on the nation’s health. The Conservative Party’s 2019 manifesto stated the party’s commitment to tackling health inequality and we urge the government to set out its plan for doing so. This needs to include a cross-government strategy that considers the role of every department and uses every available policy lever to tackle the factors that make people ill in the first place."