“Extra funding for the NHS, with 50,000 more nurses”

Boris Johnson, Conservative Party Manifesto

November 22, 2019

Facts

Boris Johnson gave a personal guarantee promising 50,000 more nurses, with his signature attached for extra emphasis, in the Conservative Party manifesto. 

When Johnson was asked about this by Sophy Ridge on Sunday 8th December 2019 - less than three weeks after the manifesto was published -  he admitted that there would only be 31,000  new nurses.

The independent website Full Fact explained that “The Conservatives say they want 50,000 more nurses in the NHS by 2024/25. These aren't all "new" nurses as the figure includes successfully encouraging nearly 19,000 existing nurses to stay. Around 31,000 will be newly trained or recruited. So that’s 50,000 more nurses working in the NHS compared to if no policy action was taken.

“Whether or not this is accurate depends on whether the target is met, and that needs to be backed up by policy action. As we've fact checked already, the Conservatives' manifesto doesn't account for the full cost of eventually employing 50,000 more nurses in the NHS.”

Verdict

Johnson was obliged to acknowledge that his ‘50,000 more nurses pledge’ was untrue less than three weeks after it was incorporated into the manifesto and packaged as “Boris Johnson’s guarantee” with his signature attached for extra emphasis.  

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