An Oldham MP has accused Scottish National Party (SNP) leader Alex Salmond of being ‘disingenuous’ about an independent Scotland’s impact on the NHS.
Debbie Abrahams, MP for Oldham East and Saddleworth, has struck out at Salmond over his claim that the NHS in Scotland will be privatised if the UK stays united.
Abrahams, who recently conducted a study into the effectiveness of international health systems, believes Mr Salmond is ‘scaremongering’ with his comments on the privatisation of the Scottish NHS ahead of the referendum on September 18.
“What has been really interesting is how the ‘people before profits’ message has been hijacked by Alex Salmond in his quest to leave the UK,” she said.
“His claim that the NHS in Scotland is at risk of privatisation if Scotland stays part of the union is disingenuous to say the least. Health policy is already devolved to the Scottish Parliament.
“The only way the NHS in Scotland will be privatised is if the Scottish government want it to be.”
Abrahams was scathing of the SNP leader’s assessment of the damage that remaining as a united union would cause.
“This just shows how the SNP are trying to confuse the issue. The people of Scotland deserve better than this,” she said.
“The SNP should address their own NHS privatisation policies in Scotland and stop this scaremongering.”
The Labour politician reinforced her point by quoting the effect the Scottish National Party has had on the health system since coming into power as a majority government in 2011.
“Private healthcare commissioned by NHS Scotland has increased by 37% and more than £100million has been spent on private healthcare in the last two years,” she said.
“They have yet to say what effect the £6billion black hole in their finances, estimated by the Institute of Financial Services, will have on NHS Scotland.
“Since the SNP failed to pass on the £300million increase in the health budget in their block grant to NHS Scotland, the NHS is clearly not one of their priorities.”
The vote on Scottish independence has been dominating press coverage ahead of decision day and MM took to the streets to find out what the Manchester public had to say yesterday.
Image courtesy of BBC Parliament via YouTube with thanks