Debates between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt

There have been 10 exchanges between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt

1 Tue 10th March 2020 Oral Answers to Questions
Department of Health and Social Care
3 interactions (230 words)
2 Tue 14th May 2019 Oral Answers to Questions
Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office
4 interactions (245 words)
3 Mon 22nd October 2018 Death of Jamal Khashoggi
Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office
3 interactions (221 words)
4 Wed 20th June 2018 Gosport Independent Panel: Publication of Report
Department of Health and Social Care
3 interactions (248 words)
5 Wed 21st March 2018 NHS Staff Pay
Department of Health and Social Care
3 interactions (266 words)
6 Tue 20th March 2018 Oral Answers to Questions
Department of Health and Social Care
2 interactions (86 words)
7 Wed 21st February 2018 Medicines and Medical Devices Safety Review
Department of Health and Social Care
3 interactions (242 words)
8 Tue 14th November 2017 Oral Answers to Questions
Department of Health and Social Care
2 interactions (130 words)
9 Tue 10th October 2017 Oral Answers to Questions
Department of Health and Social Care
3 interactions (137 words)
10 Wed 13th September 2017 NHS Pay
Department of Health and Social Care
3 interactions (115 words)

Oral Answers to Questions

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Tuesday 10th March 2020

(10 months, 1 week ago)

Commons Chamber

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Department of Health and Social Care
Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately
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Work has already been done by the regulating bodies. For instance, we are already speeding up the process for nurses from overseas who want to come here to work in the NHS. I would be very happy to have further correspondence with the right hon. Member about the specific problem, and would be delighted if he could send me an invitation to make the visit that he mentioned.

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Jeremy Hunt (South West Surrey) (Con)
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10 Mar 2020, 11:54 a.m.

I congratulate the Department on securing the NHS visa but, as the Minister knows, it does not apply to nurses and care workers in the social care sector. What is the Department’s assessment of the gap there will be in the social care workforce as a result of this new immigration policy, and how are discussions going with the Home Office and No. 10 on that issue?

Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately
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I thank my right hon. Friend for his question. I am well aware of concerns in the social care sector, particularly in areas where there are higher vacancy rates. It is important that employers make sure that they are taking the steps they can take to make sure that social care jobs are attractive and, of course, well paid, as they should be. I recognise as well a role for Government in this, supporting the role of working in social care, and overall making sure that we come together and fix the social care crisis.

Oral Answers to Questions

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Tuesday 14th May 2019

(1 year, 8 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office
Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately (Faversham and Mid Kent) (Con)
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T1. If he will make a statement on his departmental responsibilities. [910891]

Jeremy Hunt Portrait The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (Mr Jeremy Hunt)
- Parliament Live - Hansard - - - Excerpts

14 May 2019, 12:31 p.m.

Time is short, so I have three brief one-sentence updates for the House. First, following my trip to Africa, I can announce that the Africa investment summit will happen on 20 January 2020.

Secondly, I know that the whole House was greatly relieved by the pardoning of the Reuters journalists, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, and I thank the Burmese Government for listening to representations made by us and many others.

Thirdly, I think the whole House will want to congratulate and thank United Nations envoy, Martin Griffiths, and the head of the UN monitors, General Michael Lollesgaard, for their extraordinary efforts in Yemen, which have led to the Houthis redeploying out of Hodeidah, which is the first real ray of sunlight since the Stockholm talks.

Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately
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14 May 2019, 12:31 p.m.

I welcome the decision by the Sultan of Brunei not to sentence LGBT people to death by stoning, but it is still a crime to be gay in Brunei. Will my right hon. Friend use his influence to urge the Kingdom to repeal that law?

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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14 May 2019, 12:31 p.m.

I thank my hon. Friend for that question. That is a very good example of some important lobbying by both me and the Minister of State for Asia, because that law is totally repugnant to us and our values. We recognise Brunei is a sovereign state, and it is for it to make its own laws, but that is contrary to British values.

Death of Jamal Khashoggi

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Monday 22nd October 2018

(2 years, 2 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office
Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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22 Oct 2018, 6:59 p.m.

I have made it very clear that we need to find out who was ultimately responsible for happened and act accordingly, but on the question about arms sales, I think the hon. Lady is misrepresenting the approach we have in this country, which, as I mentioned earlier, was set up by Robin Cook, a Labour Foreign Secretary. In the past few years, we have suspended or revoked licences for arms sales to Russia, Ukraine, Egypt, Libya and Yemen. In 2015 alone, we refused 331 licences. We have one of the strictest regimes in the world, and we will follow the proper processes that we have in place in the case of Saudi Arabia as well.

Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately (Faversham and Mid Kent) (Con)
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22 Oct 2018, 6:59 p.m.

The idea that a man walked into the Saudi embassy and did not walk out while his wife was outside is simply appalling, and the accounts we have heard lack credibility. I have said in this place before that I was glad to see what seemed to be progress on women’s rights and opportunities in Saudi, but this is not the sort of behaviour that we can accept from an ally. May I support my right hon. Friend’s demand for a robust account of what happened and his plan to take robust action?

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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22 Oct 2018, 6:59 p.m.

Absolutely—we will be extremely robust if these reports turn out to be true.

Gosport Independent Panel: Publication of Report

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Wednesday 20th June 2018

(2 years, 7 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Department of Health and Social Care
Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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20 Jun 2018, 1:33 p.m.

The right hon. Gentleman is absolutely right: we have a regulatory landscape that is very complex, does not achieve the results we want, and forces regulators to spend time doing things they do not want to do and does not give them enough time for things they do want to do. Obviously, because of the parliamentary arithmetic, if we are able to get parliamentary consensus on such a change, that would speed forward the legislation.

Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately (Faversham and Mid Kent) (Con)
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20 Jun 2018, 1:33 p.m.

There are many “if onlys”, but one of them is: if only the junior doctors and others who spoke up had been listened to. I know my right hon. Friend is committed to making sure that people and whistleblowers are listened to and that he is committed to transparency. Will he say a bit more about what he is doing to make sure that everyone involved in patient care—from consultants to healthcare assistants, porters, patients and families—are listened to and that their concerns are acted on?

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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20 Jun 2018, 1:34 p.m.

I think we have made progress when it comes to whistleblowing because every trust now has a “freedom to speak up” guardian—an independent person inside the trust whom clinicians can contact if they have patient safety concerns. That is a big step forward, which was recommended by Robert Francis. Where I am less clear that we have solved the problem is in relation to having someone for families to go to if they think that everyone is closing ranks, and we now need to reflect on that.

NHS Staff Pay

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Wednesday 21st March 2018

(2 years, 10 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Department of Health and Social Care
Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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21 Mar 2018, 1:27 p.m.

The hon. Lady speaks eloquently and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland was listening to her comments. It is a matter of great sadness that nurses’ pay has fallen behind in Northern Ireland, not because the money was not available, but simply because the Administration were not in place to implement changes. I know that my right hon. Friend will do everything she can.

Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately (Faversham and Mid Kent) (Con)
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21 Mar 2018, 1:27 p.m.

I welcome the proposed pay rise, especially the increase for the lowest paid in the NHS. Nurses at my local hospitals tell me that as well as a pay rise, what they really want is flexibility in relation to things that happen in their lives, so I particularly welcome that aspect of the proposal. Does my right hon. Friend agree that flexibility and investment in training will enable NHS employers to show their appreciation for the valuable contribution that each individual member of staff makes to the care of patients?

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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21 Mar 2018, 1:28 p.m.

My hon. Friend is absolutely right and speaks with a great deal of knowledge. Let me give an example of something we are doing that is not part of this deal, but that backs up what she says. We are prioritising the use in every hospital of an effective e-rostering system that enables people to book the shifts that they want on their phones and to change them very easily through a modern IT system. That makes an enormous difference to the control that they have over the hours they work, and I think that, in combination with the new deal, that will make a big difference.

Oral Answers to Questions

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Tuesday 20th March 2018

(2 years, 10 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Department of Health and Social Care
Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately (Faversham and Mid Kent) (Con)
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20 Mar 2018, 12:31 p.m.

May I welcome today’s announcement on a new medical school for Kent? In an area that struggles to attract doctors, this will make a huge difference: it is genuinely a game changer. Will my right hon. Friend congratulate the University of Kent and Canterbury Christ Church University on their successful bid?

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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I absolutely congratulate them, but I also congratulate my hon. Friend, because I know that she worked incredibly hard on this bid. Thanks to that, I am sure, they are among the successful bidders today.

Medicines and Medical Devices Safety Review

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Wednesday 21st February 2018

(2 years, 10 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Department of Health and Social Care
Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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21 Feb 2018, 1:22 p.m.

I can give the hon. Gentleman an absolute assurance that she will do so. In the case of valproate it is very clear what the next steps should be, because there is no dispute over the science. When there is controversy over the science—and I appreciate how distressing that is for the families involved—the first thing we must do is establish the truth of the situation, and that is why we have given Baroness Cumberlege a free hand to look at the whole issue.

Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately (Faversham and Mid Kent) (Con)
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21 Feb 2018, 1:23 p.m.

I welcome the statement, which is consistent with my right hon. Friend’s track record of driving the NHS to stop causing harm to patients. May I ask him to continue to focus on encouraging, requiring and supporting all healthcare professionals to make the shift from a defensive to a learning mindset, so that they listen and learn not just from NHS experience, but from patients as well?

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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21 Feb 2018, 1:24 p.m.

My hon. Friend, who has huge experience in healthcare, is right to say that at the heart of dealing with these very complex issues is the need for us to be careful not to inadvertently encourage a culture of defensive medicine. If doctors feel unable to be open about mistakes that may have happened because they are worried about legal consequences, we will not benefit from the learning that is so incredibly important, and one of the purposes of the review is to ensure that we support that open learning culture.

Oral Answers to Questions

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Tuesday 14th November 2017

(3 years, 2 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Department of Health and Social Care
Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately (Faversham and Mid Kent) (Con)
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14 Nov 2017, 12:36 p.m.

Local A&Es serving my constituents in Kent now have 24/7 mental health services, thanks to this Government’s determination to improve mental healthcare. Can my right hon. Friend assure me that the Government will fulfil their commitment to increase mental health spending by at least £1 billion by 2020?

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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14 Nov 2017, 12:36 p.m.

We are absolutely committed to that. We are spending around £1.4 billion more than we were three years ago, and there is more that we need to invest. I am pleased that my hon. Friend mentioned crisis care, because for people who believe in parity of esteem, ensuring that people can get help in a mental health crisis as quickly as they could go to A&E for a physical health crisis is one of the big gaps that we have to fill.

Oral Answers to Questions

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Tuesday 10th October 2017

(3 years, 3 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Department of Health and Social Care
Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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10 Oct 2017, 12:06 p.m.

I welcome what I think is my first question from the hon. Lady, and I can give her some good news: the pay cap has been scrapped.

Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately (Faversham and Mid Kent) (Con)
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10 Oct 2017, 12:06 p.m.

In the work that I have done in hospitals, staff have told me that they are most unhappy about too much reliance on temporary staff, rota gaps and not feeling valued, as opposed to issues around pay. The latter—not feeling valued—often goes hand in hand with poor management practices. What is my right hon. Friend doing about those causes of staff unhappiness?

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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My hon. Friend, who has a lot of experience of working in the NHS, is absolutely right. The new Care Quality Commission inspection regime is designed precisely to identify good, strong leadership, because that has the best impact on staff and, through that, the best impact on patients.

NHS Pay

Debate between Helen Whately and Jeremy Hunt
Wednesday 13th September 2017

(3 years, 4 months ago)

Commons Chamber

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Department of Health and Social Care
Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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13 Sep 2017, 1:38 p.m.

I will give way to some Conservative Members.

Helen Whately Portrait Helen Whately
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Opposition Members are raising concerns about staff shortages and about recruiting staff from overseas. I am sure we all have hospitals serving our constituents that have had to go overseas to recruit. We do not want to see that; we want to see nurses trained in the UK and British nurses. I welcome the fact that the Secretary of State has taken action to remove the cap on nurses in training so that we can train more home-grown nurses.

Jeremy Hunt Portrait Mr Hunt
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13 Sep 2017, 1:40 p.m.

My hon. Friend is right about that, because at the heart of this problem is getting the training of nurses right and making sure we train enough nurses.