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Baroness Blatch: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Baroness for allowing me to intervene. The noble Baroness gave a rather alarming statistic. I should like it confirmed if she will do so. I understand that the noble Baroness is looking for £1.5 billion worth of savings from the NHS as it is run at present. Will she confirm that figure?
Baroness Hollis of Heigham: My Lords, that was the figure I gave. If I have mis-stated the figure, I shall write to the noble Baroness. We cannot continue to fund failure. I just ask your Lordships to remember that under previous Conservative administrations the number of people dependent on benefit doubled from one in 12 to one in six; one in five households of people of working
The knee-jerk response of the previous Government was to cut already meagre benefit payments to their already poor claimants in the forlorn hope that they could contain the growth in expenditure caused by their own economic and social failure. We can do better. We must, and we will. As Beveridge said--no opting out into private pacts with social evil. One nation; a society not divided; one that does not create outsiders or allow
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