Diane Abbott MP, Labour’s shadow public health minister attacks government over public relations spending
14 Mar 2013Diane Abbott MP, Labour’s shadow public health minister attacks government over public relations spending
Patients groups have raised concerns that the NHS is spending millions of pounds a year on public relations instead of putting the cash towards front line services.
Freedom of Information requests by BBC London found that the health service spent GBP13 million on public relations in the last three years in the capital alone - enough to recruit 600 new nurses.
Labour today revealed figures giving a glimpse of the spend on public relations at the Department of Health. The Department of Health has admitted that it has spent £5176267 on its media centre since 2010 and is currently employing 34 full-time press officers and one part-time press officer. These figures were revealed following parliamentary questions by Labour’s Diane Abbott MP.
Diane Abbott MP, Labour’s shadow public health minister said:
‘Almost 7,000 nursing posts have been lost since David Cameron entered Downing Street and they are being replaced by armies of press officers and management consultants. These people are being employed to try and stem the rising tide of bad news for our NHS since this government came to power. We’re increasingly seeing the cost to patient care of this government’s NHS chaos. No amount of spin can change the fact that this government is a disaster for our NHS, and for the health of this country.
‘The strain being put on patient care by this government is unbearable, and I think many people bitterly regret ever letting the Tories anywhere near our NHS.’
1) The cost of the Department of Health’s own media centre: http://www.theyworkforyou.com/wrans/?id=2013-03-05a.145502.h&s=speaker%3A10001#g145502.q0
2) 34 fulltime press officers at the Department of Health http://www.theyworkforyou.com/wrans/?id=2012-04-19a.102497.h&s=press+speaker%3A10001#g102497.q0
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