Theresa May tried to strike a light tone for the first Prime Minister’s Questions of 2018, but ended up looking out of her depth – and not just when she quipped about Labour’s Angela Rayner not being present to defend herself – only to have to apologise when informed that the shadow education secretary was absent as she was undergoing medical treatment.
And it was the NHS that dominated a tense PMQs, with the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt shifting about in his seat looking more uneasy than the Prime Minister, especially after Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s killer line:
“We know the Prime Minister recognises there is an NHS crisis because she wanted to sack the health secretary last week but was too weak to do it.”
The leader of the opposition described a worsening NHS crisis and warned “NHS funds are being siphoned off to private health companies”
And Corbyn described how Virgin health had sued the NHS after not winning yet more private healthcare contracts, a case The London Economic covered at the end of last year. Especially when it turned out that Virgin Health had won yet more private healthcare contracts despite having taken their payout from an underfunded NHS.
Watch the full angry exchanges in parliament:
Jeremy Corbyn also used a heartbreaking and “not uncommon” example of NHS failings to challenge the Prime Minister on its preparedness in today’s PMQs.
With 55,000 cancelled operations joining the four million-strong waiting list the Labour leader told the case of Vicky to drive the message home in the first questions of 2018.
Vicky’s 82 yr old mother spent 13 hours on a trolley in a corridor, on top of the three hours between calling 999 and arriving in hospital.
Her mother then suffered a heart attack.