Rebecca Blake, Labour’s 2015 general election candidate in Redditch met with Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham to discuss the delays Redditch residents are experiencing. Rebecca also welcomed Labour's plan to add 8,000 GPs, announced by Labour Leader Ed Miliband in his speech.
Rebecca Blake said: "David Cameron has made it harder for people in Redditch to get a GP appointment - proof he can't be trusted with our local NHS.
“Patients all over Redditch have told me that the last thing they need when feeling unwell is to either have to wait for three weeks to see their family doctor or face repeating their medical condition over and over to different people.”
“I know that GPs are under immense pressure and cuts in the NHS and billions of pounds wasted on re-organisation is certainly not helping doctors care for their patients.
“I’ve discussed with Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham, here at the Labour Conference, the pressures for patients across Redditch, who want to see their family GP yet frequently have to wait as long as three weeks. This simply isn’t good enough.
"Within days of the last election, Labour's appointments guarantee was scrapped and now thousands of people here are waiting over a week. Labour will scrap David Cameron's NHS market and invest the savings in helping people get a GP appointment within 48 hours or on the same day for those who need it."
Over 25,000 patients in Redditch & Bromsgrove have waited seven days or longer to see a GP the last time they tried, an official NHS survey released in the summer found.
Labour has pledged to invest £100 million in GP surgeries - saved by scrapping David Cameron's NHS market rules that waste millions on lawyers fees and contract tendering - to guarantee appointments within 48 hours or on the same day for those who need it.
The annual NHS England survey, released in the summer, also revealed that local patients struggle to see the family doctor of their choosing. More than 44,000 patients cannot consistently see their preferred GP, instead having to repeat their symptoms over and over again to different doctors.
The next Labour Government will also give patients the right to book ahead with the GP they prefer to see.
Andy Burnham MP, Labour's Shadow Health Secretary, said:
"This survey confirms what Labour has been saying. People want to be able to see the GP they trust, and who knows their family history, but are left phoning the surgery day after day only to be disappointed. Patients are waiting days or even weeks for appointments and that is forcing people to A&E in record numbers.
“People know from their own experience that the NHS is heading downhill under this Government."