UUP Calls On Govt To 'Step Up' For Healthcare

The Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) has called on the UK government to "step up" for Northern Ireland's struggling healthcare system.

Party leader Doug Beattie has met with a senior Northern Ireland Office (NIO) official to raise his concerns that the recent Assembly budget will result in further damage to our Health Service.

Speaking after the meeting, Mr. Beattie said: "It is accepted that Northern Ireland has been underfunded for many years. While this is as much the fault of the Westminster government as it is those parties who have, through repeatedly collapsing the institutions, stopped the ability to develop long-term planning, it has created a breaking point for many of our devolved departments.
News Image
"In my discussions with a senior NIO official today I highlighted the potential of the collapse of key health provisions if the budget, as presented, were to be voted through the Assembly.

"I called for urgent discussions with the Prime Minister and the Chancellor of the Exchequer. This is to identify additional funding that could be delivered from Westminster to underwrite the £300 million shortfall in Health funding for the coming year.

"As I made clear last week. The budget presented to Robin Swann is unacceptable and cannot be supported by the Ulster Unionist Party. I also made it clear that I would do everything possible to look for solutions that would allow the shortfall to be met. I would hope that other party leaders would join me in raising this as a matter of urgency with the Westminster government."

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

13 March 2013
NI Abortion Amendment Fails
A proposed amendment which would ban abortions in private clinics has failed in the Northern Ireland Assembly. The proposal, which was put forward by the DUP and SDLP, was lost after 40 politicians voted against it. Sinn Fein, Alliance and the Green Party managed to block the move.
10 November 2011
Mental Health Issues No Workforce Barrier
People with mental health issues are making a significant contribution to the workforce. Far from being any burden, the Employment and Learning Minister, Dr Stephen Farry, has highlighted the significant contribution that those with mental health issues make to Northern Ireland's workforce.
22 November 2023
DUP 'Will Not Get Everything It Wants' – Robinson
The DUP "will not get everything it wants" from the UK government, former party leader and First Minister Peter Robinson has warned. Mr Robinson made the comments in an interview with BBC Radio Ulster's Talkback programme, where he was asked about the DUP's ongoing boycott of Stormont.
06 November 2020
Sexual Crime Victims Continually Let Down- Green Party NI
Latest official figures on sexual offences in Northern Ireland show victims are being continually let down, the Green Party has claimed. Calls for improved outcomes for victims have emerged after the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) revealed that the conviction rate for the offence of rape stands at 29.9%.
13 December 2018
PM Theresa May Survives No Confidence Vote
Prime Minister Theresa May has survived a vote of no confidence in her leadership which was held on Wednesday evening, 12 December. Conservative MPs were balloted on whether or not Mrs May should remain as party leader. They voted in support of her by 200 votes to 117.