Helen Morgan MP, North Shropshire Liberal Democrats

Government paralysis following Johnson resignation could make health crisis worse

8th July 2022

North Shropshire MP Helen Morgan has told new ministers to focus on fixing the health crisis as she warned Government paralysis risked making Shropshire’s ambulance and A&E delays worse.

Helen has worked tirelessly to identify solutions to the health issues in Shropshire since being elected seven months ago and Health Minister Edward Argar was due to visit the area to see the problems first hand off the back of Helen’s campaign.

Helen is now urging new health ministers to honour this commitment and rapidly get up to speed with the system-wide problems and staffing shortages impacting health and care in Shropshire.

This week she raised the profile of Shropshire’s health issues in a debate in Westminster Hall and spoke in the House of Commons to urge the Government to hold its own debate on national ambulance issues.

The Lib Dem MP recently met with Sajid Javid to discuss local issues with GPs, A&Es and ambulances, however both he and Edward Argar have now quit the Government along with more than 50 other ministers.

Helen Morgan MP said: “There is no time to waste when it comes to addressing the multiple problems that are combining to leave people facing dangerously long waits for ambulances, scans and GP appointments in Shropshire.

“It is therefore crucial that the new team in the Department for Health immediately get up to speed but also get to Shropshire so they can fully understand how difficult families are finding it to access basic care.

“We don’t have enough staff in any area of the system here: from social care to GPs to emergency departments and cancer wards. And it’s impossible for a minister in Whitehall to appreciate the particular difficulties we face in rural areas where ambulances often take twice as long to reach people.

“I have worked hard to engage with the Government since my election to make progress solving these problems and while it is the Conservatives who are to blame for creating this situation, I will continue to engage with whoever is in the Health Department because solving these problems is what matters – not political rivalry.

“I hope Edward Argar’s replacement will honour his commitment to visit Shropshire so they can see for themselves the pressure our hardworking doctors, nurses and paramedics are facing.”

Helen immediately called on new Health Secretary Steve Barclay to commission a CQC inquiry into Shropshire’s critically-long ambulance delays and, after the resignation of Boris Johnson, spoke in Parliament to highlight that matters of life and death are being ignored due to the Government’s paralysis.

However key problems are now being ignored as new appointees get up to speed with their briefs.

Speaking in the House of Commons shortly after Boris Johnson’s resignation was announced, Helen said: “Since my election, I have been campaigning on ambulance response times in Shropshire. As a result of that campaign, local health leaders have been preparing for a visit from the Minister for Health, the hon. Member for Charnwood (Edward Argar), in the coming weeks to see how they have been doing to improve the situation. My understanding is that the Minister resigned yesterday evening, so that visit is on hold, postponed or maybe even cancelled. Can the Leader of the House bring forward a debate in Government time on the national ambulance situation? People are dying avoidable deaths not only in North Shropshire but across the country and it is time that the Government got a grip of it.”




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