The NHS is our greatest national institution and we are fortunate to benefit from St Thomas’, which is a fantastic hospital.

I have always opposed attempts to privatise our health service, and the compromises to quality that are made when funding is squeezed. Through years of the internal market, foundation status and top-down reorganisations, what people really want is a good quality local hospital, equipped for their needs and anticipating future requirements.

Labour will invest to give patients the modern, well-resourced services they deserve and staff that are able to deliver the standards that patients expect. We will guarantee and uphold the standards of service to which patients are legally entitled under the NHS Constitution. By guaranteeing access to treatment within 18 weeks we will take one million people off NHS waiting lists by the end of the Parliament. We will guarantee patients can be seen in A&E within four hours and help another million people each year.

I will always champion our local NHS and prevent any downgrading of St Thomas’.