Labour leader Ed Miliband will reinforce his opposition to the government’s NHS reforms today when accusing David Cameron of breaking his policy promises on health.
During a visit to the Royal Bolton Hospital, in Greater Manchester, Mr Miliband will denounce the government’s Health And Social Care Bill as “bad for the NHS” and repeat his call on the prime minister to scrap it.
More than 120,000 people have now signed an e-petition on a government website calling for the dumping of the bill, which has attracted opposition from health professionals and patients’ groups.
Downing Street on Monday dismissed suggestions that the health secretary Andrew Lansley should be sacked and insisted ministers were “fully behind” his NHS reforms.
Mr Cameron is expected shortly to launch a new offensive to “sell” the bill to the public.
He said at the weekend he was “at one” with Mr Lansley and the legislation amid reports of deep unease among Tory Cabinet ministers and even Number 10 insiders.
Speaking to nurses in Bolton today, Mr Miliband is expected to say: “The prime minister made solemn promises before the election to the country.
“No going back to waiting for hours on end in A&E. Three thousand more midwives. An end to hospital closures. And no more top-down reorganisations.
“He has broken all these promises and more. It is bad for our NHS and bad for politics.
“He should drop his NHS bill and at least restore one of his broken promises. He should listen to doctors and nurses and the 120,000 who have signed the petition urging him to drop the bill.”