According to the Liberal Democrats Party website the Liberal Democrats Party will try to achieve the following if they gain power at the 2010 general election:
We’re all proud of the NHS, but with superbugs, long waiting lists, and a postcode lottery for vital drugs – it still lets too many of us down. Liberal Democrats will put doctors, nurses and patients back in control. There’ll be guaranteed care for elderly people. And the NHS will pay for you to go private if they can’t deliver your treatment on time.
Give the NHS back to the people – Too often decisions are taken to shut clinics, wards or entire hospitals, where nobody asked what local people thought, or nobody listened to what they said following sham consultation. Local people pay for the NHS and should shape how it is run – not Whitehall or unelected officials. We will set up elected local health boards that will be accountable directly to local people for their decisions.
Fund personal care – We will invest an extra £2 billion to pay for a ‘universal care payment’ based on an individual’s need, not their ability to pay, for those aged over 65, who require personal care. This would slash care costs for individuals and guarantee a minimum standard of care for those who need it. We will also scrap charges for eye and dental checks and review prescription charges.
Introduce a patient contract – We will guarantee every citizen access to a high standard of core healthcare entitlements within maximum waiting times. To make sure that the NHS delivers, patients will have the right to receive private treatment, paid for by the NHS, if the waiting time was not met.
Free the NHS from Government meddling – We will end Government meddling in the NHS. Letting staff get on with their jobs will lead to shorter waiting times, cleaner hospitals and more personalised care.
Keeping people healthy, tackling Health Inequalities – We will give people the information and opportunities to make healthy choices, for example through clearer food and alcohol labelling. We will tackle the wider problems contributing to health inequality such as poverty, poor housing and poor environment.
Tackle the dentist crisis – We will create incentives for dentists to treat patients in the greatest need. The performance of our dentists will be monitored to ensure that standards are kept high. We will also promote good oral health.
I would be interested to hear both positive and negative views on Liberal Democrats Health policies in the comments below?