Get your facts straight Labour blasted for using fake figures about the NHS

Labour economic plans mocked by Sky News

Labour’s Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves has been accused of repeating fake figures about the NHS.

The woman who will be guiding the country’s economy if Labour wins power was on the Sunday morning political shows today ahead of next Wednesday’s Autumn Statement.

But her claims about the NHS while being interviewed by the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg infuriated Conservative health minister Maria Caulfield after she repeated claims which Ms Caulfield said have been disproven.

Talking about the Tory record, Ms Reeves said: “Well, they’ve been in power now for 13 years. It is the case, that people can play the system and not look for work, whilst claiming taxpayers money – that’s on them, what have they been doing for 13 years?

“For me, it’s about tackling the root cause of the problem.

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“There are 7.8 million people on hospital waiting lists, and there are 2.6 million people who are off work sick.

“Those two things are linked, we’ve got to get our NHS functioning properly, because that’s the way to get our economy working properly.

“And so that’s why we’ve committed to putting more money into our NHS by getting rid of the non dom tax status, 2 million additional appointments every year in our NHS to get those waiting lists down and to get people back to work. That’s what I would be doing if I was Chancellor.”

But the Tories have pointed out that the Full Fact fact checking website has already disproved the claim when shadow Health Secretary Wes Streeting made a similar one.

At the time FullFact stated: “Full Fact told Labour about the mistake in its press release shortly after it was sent out. We have also approached the party, the Sun and MailOnline for comment.”

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Added to that the Office for Budget Responsibility has said that the NHS waiting lists are not an economic factor.

The Tories have already been mocking Ms Reeves for copying and pasting extracts from Wikipedia for her new book.

Health Minister Ms Caulfield, a former nurse, said: “When the shadow chancellor is not copying from Wikipedia she’s exaggerating numbers.”

“It isn’t the first time Labour’s been called out for massaging the figures.

“Labour should stick to getting their facts straight. Meanwhile, this Conservative government is tackling the NHS backlog, eliminating the longest waits and giving patients more choice and control.”

Added to that they pointed out that concerns have been raised about the Labour Welsh Government “skewing figures” for NHS Wales in October.

NHS Wales was accused of removing around a quarter of the number of patients who had waited more than four hours in A&E.

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