The health and wellbeing of my constituents is a top priority. I am working hard to secure better investment for local services so that we can further improve the quality of services and outcomes achieved. I am also promoting ways we can all take better care of ourselves - by choosing healthy food options, staying active, and looking after our mental health. Download my mental health guide for more information. I want all of my constituents to know that I am here to help and support them.
Levelling Up Local Services:
- Since 2010, the budget available to the NHS has increased every year and is continuing to be increased by £33.9 billion by 2023/24. This represents the largest, longest funding settlement in the history of our NHS. An extra £36 billion will be made available for health and social care over the next three years.
- Our record funding has enabled us to recruit an extra 41,461 staff compared to January 2021. As of February 2022, the number of nurses was 30,000 higher compared to September 2019. We have also increased the number of medical school places in England by 25% from 2018/19 to 2020/21. Our new funding will deliver 50 million extra general practice appointments a year, an increase of over 15 per cent.
- More than 2.4 million children and young people now have access to NHS mental health support in schools and colleges. The NHS Long Term Plan, published in 2019, set out plans for mental health teams to cover 20-25% of schools by Spring 2023. The efforts of NHS staff mean that the health service in England is already covering more than a quarter – 26% - of schools one year ahead of a schedule, having accelerated the rollout.
Supporting Carers and Social Care:
- Wolverhampton has been selected as one of five ‘trailblazer’ local authorities to implement the improved adult social care charging reform system. The city is receiving half a million pounds to implement the reforms early. It will introduce a new lifetime cap on the amount anyone in England will need to spend on their personal care, alongside a more generous means test and moving towards a fairer rate of care. It means no one has to face unpredictable care costs.
- Carers play a vital role in our communities, and we all owe them a debt of gratitude. The main cash benefits for those caring for disabled people is Carer’s Allowance, and the carer premium payable with means-tested benefits which includes a carer element. There are around 1240 carers in Wolverhampton South West claiming £4.3 million in support.
- I am pleased that the City of Wolverhampton Council has also received £14.8 million Improved Better Care Fund to better integrate health and social care and deliver help for local people and carers and £15.4 million for the Social Care Grant. Further support for carers can be found on my website here.
Improving Public Health:
- We are determined to improve the health and wellbeing of the nation - tackling obesity and improving mental health. I am pleased that Wolverhampton has been allocated £21.7 million in 2022 to help reduce health inequalities to deliver essential frontline services such as child health visits, drug treatment, sexual health services, and any ongoing challenges from COVID-19.
- As someone who suffered from poor mental health in the past, I am pleased the Government has launched a call for evidence to inform the development of a new, 10-year plan to improve mental health. This will build on action already underway, which includes the commitment to invest an extra £2.3 billion a year in mental health services by 2023-24.
- I want to see more tailored and preventative care, closer to home. The Government has committed £15 million to fund prevention activities like debt advice, carers support, outreach to people facing loneliness and isolation, youth projects, and community groups for those most affected by COVID-19 including minority ethnic communities. Alzheimer's Research UK has shown that you can take steps to keep your brain healthy, just as you can improve other parts of your physical health. Scroll through their 40 everyday tips for better brain health online at www.alzheimersresearchuk.org/brain-health/brain-health-tips.