Labour say London’s health and social care budgets must be devolved to ensure the city’s leaders and medical professionals can meet its “unique health challenges”.
Dr Onkar Sahota, the party’s health spokesperson on the London Assembly, wants the capital to get the same local control over budgets as Chancellor George Osborne recently gave to Manchester.
The city is to be given direct responsibility for its entire £6bn NHS budget, allowing integrated services to be designed to suit the city’s healthcare needs but despite having an elected Mayor since 2000, London has no similar control over its health spending or services.
Dr Sahota said: “In London we have unique health needs compared with other areas. We have fewer smokers, less risk of heart disease and lower cancer rates than the rest of the country.
“On the other hand we have a much younger population, higher rates of childhood obesity, HIV and serious mental illness.
“As with Manchester, London’s different needs should mean different solutions.”
The AM has also backed calls by the London Health Commission for new strategic leadership of the NHS in London, saying a new health commissioner post should be created with the post holder working alongside the Mayor to coordinate healthcare policy in the capital.