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The Spending Review: Live Blog


25 Nov 2015

Today chancellor George Osborne will reveal billions of pounds of cuts and departmental spending limits for the next five years in the Autumn Statement and Spending Review.

Join us here and on Twitter @Pharmacist_News at 12:30pm as we publish all the information you need to know.

12:30pm: George Osborne prepares to deliver the first Autumn Statement of this Conservative government.

We will put security first, we will protect economic and national security. They provide the foundations for everything we want to support and the strong country we want to build.

Five years ago our economy was in crisis, we were borrowing £1 in every four we spent and our job was to rescue Britain, it is now to rebuild Britain.

Nothing is possible without the foundations of a strong economy. No economy in G7 has grown faster than the UK since 2010.

But our debts are too high and our deficit remains. The weakness of Eurozones remain a problem and there are concerns about emerging economies.

Claims Britain had to choose between sound public finances and good public services have been proved wrong.

We will borrow £8bn less than we forecast – we will fix the roof while the sun is shining. We will spend £12bn more on capital investments.

12:50pm: In 2010 we inherited debt of 11.1% of national income, this year it is set to be 3.9%, next year it will be 2.5%. We will be in a surplus by 2019/20.

Public spending to reach £857bn by 2020/21. People will want to know what cuts and spending mean in practise.

The overall rate of annual cuts are less than half of those delivered over the last five years. We are spending a lower proportion on welfare and a higher proportion on infrastructure.

The decisions required to deliver savings are not easy.

We need to develop a modern and integrated health systme that supports people at every stage of their lives.

Our NHS is the first priority of this government, we have been increasing spending on the NHS in England and we do so again. We will work with health professionals to deliver £22bn efficiency savings, modernising the way we fund students of healthcare.

We will replace direct finding with loans for new students.

We will also give the NHS the money it needs. We will fully deliver £6bn up front next year to fund the Five Year Forward View.

The NHS budget will rise from £101bn to £120bn by 2020/21. This is the largest investment in the health service since its creation.

We have a clear plan for improving the NHS.

1:00pm: There is one part that has been neglected for too long – mental health. We have laid the foundations for the equality of treatment, today we build on that with additonal funding.

I am increasing the Better Care Fund to drive integration between health and social services, by the end of the parliament social care spending will have increased in real terms.

1:10pm: The devolved administrations of the UK will have unprecedented new powers to drive their economies.

We are spending on the economic infrastrucutre that connects our nations, we will invest in new roads, railways and flood defences we need.

1:16pm: We need to back science to back business. I am protecting the budget for science in real terms.

I am increasing the cash that will go to the Arts Council to keep museums and galleries free. I am supporting Hull City of Culture – the money for Hull is all part of a package for the northern powerhouse.

1:20pm: 300,000 people have signed a petition arguing that no VAT should be charged on sanitary products. I am going to use the £15m raised from the tampon tax to fund women’s health and support charities.

1:23pm: Cash will be increased in the dedicated school grant. 500 new free schools to be funded.

We will expand the national citizen service, by the end of the decade 300,000 students will be on the programme. The schools budget will be protected in real terms.

We will be spending twice as much on apprentices by 2020 compared to when we came into office.

1:30pm: We will transform the justice system, underused courts will be closed. Old Victorian prisons will be sold this and we will build nine, modern prisons.

Holloway prison will close.

By selling the old prisons we will create more space for housing in our cities. We choose to build. Above all we choose to build the homes people can buy. There will be 400,000 new affordable homes.

1:34pm: We will help those in the fragile and failing states on Europe’s borders. Our overseas aid budget will increase to £16.3bn by 2020. I am protecting the budget of the foreign and commonwealth office.

Crime has fallen and the number of neighbourhood officers has increased – that must continue. The counter-terrorism budget must be increased by 30%. But further savings must be made in the police by merging back offices and sharing expertise.

However there will be no cuts in the police budget at all.

1:38pm: We are making decisions that build the great public services people rely on, infrastrucutre, homes and defences. We have been elected as a one nation government, today we deliver our spending review. We are the mainstram representatives of the working people of Britain.

1:50pm: Shadow chancellor John McDonnell says front-loaded funding will, in reality, only plug some of the gap in the huge deficits trusts are reporting.

The £22bn of efficiency savings are unrealistic and cash seems to be coming in part from nursing training. It’s one of a number of false economies that form more burdens to face the NHS.

We are facing a massive winter crisis in the NHS and yet again we will have to rely upon the professional dedication of our staff.

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt refusal to go to ACAS for mediation with the junior doctors is “no way to maintain morale”.

There is also an attack on social care. 3,000 beds have been lost already and the 2% care precept announced by the chancellor is not nearly enough.

More people will be forced to resort to their local hospital for care.

We welcome additional mental health funding, but it is no good if local authority support is being cut.


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