WORCESTERSHIRE’S hospitals were never in the running for a slice of the £1.8billion allocated for the NHS because their plans were not ready, Chancellor of the Exchequer and Bromsgrove MP Sajid Javid has exclusively told the Standard.
In his first full interview since getting the keys to Number 11, Mr Javid explained that it was not a case of the county’s hospitals being overlooked or ignored.
He said every one of the 20 hospitals which had received funding had already put their plans in place and had them ‘signed off’ detailing exactly what they needed with regard to equipment and resources and how the money would be spent.
“I know plans are currently being put together for the Worcestershire Royal Hospital and the Alexandra and the Department of Health and the Treasury are happy to look at those plans to see what we can do, but at the moment they are not ready.
“As a local MP for the area, Worcestershire’s hospitals will always be a priority for me but the plans for them are not far enough down the line.
“There will be other opportunities coming up for hospitals to apply for funding and as soon as plans are finalised, they will be carefully looked at.”
When asked why previous Chancellor Philip Hammond was perceived as not someone who ‘splashed the cash’, Mr Javid said different people naturally approached the role in different ways.
“Whilst always being fiscally prudent, I believe that when the economy is strong – like ours is – and when the opportunity arises, it is important to ensure investment goes into public services.”
Paul Brennan, Deputy Chief Executive at Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “There was no bidding process for the recent release of capital funding. We do have two proposals which are developed which we plan to submit for the next round of capital funding.”