Norman Lamb, a health minister, today denied the government were making cuts or supporting cuts to the ambulance service – despite the East of England Ambulance Service Trust having to make savings of £50m over the next five years.
The local Labour Party, which set up the Act on Ambulances petition against the moves to reduce the ambulance fleet in Cromer and North Walsham, has now challenged the MP’s claims.
Denise Burke, chair of North Norfolk Labour Party, said:
“The government promised to cut the deficit, not the NHS, but they are doing the opposite.
6500 nurses have been cut since the last general election, the ambulance trust is pleading for more funding as it reduces the number of ambulance fleet, and NHS operations are being rationed.
After two and a half years in government the buck stops here for Norman Lamb. He has a significant role in this because he voted for these reductions in the 2010 spending review and is now responsible for implementing the health cuts as a minister.
North Norfolk residents weren’t born yesterday. They know that a better ambulance service with faster response times cannot be achieved while the government is cutting the budget by £50m over the next 5 years.
With an ageing population in rural communities, north Norfolk needs a better ambulance service, not fewer ambulances.”