MY WEEK IN WESTMINSTER

THIS week I have been attending the Conservative Party Conference 2013 and it has been an interesting week with the announcement of some key new policies.

One of those which caught my attention was the Prime Minister’s plan to offer more money to doctors who stay open from 8am to 8pm, seven days a week.

It’s a bold undertaking and one which I am sure will be welcomed by the many people who have struggled to get an appointment to see their GP in the past.

The move should also have an impact on packed waiting rooms at A&E departments in hospitals around the country with people being diagnosed and treated for more minor conditions in the proper way, in a doctor’s surgery rather than on the ward.

I was also pleased to see the announcement of a £1,000 Transferable Tax Allowance for married couples

I believe that marriage is an important institution at the heart of a strong society and that the new scheme is a great reward for the four million married couples in Britain it will benefit.

I know the Prime Minister values the commitment of marriage and this is a policy which is close to his heart and could leave those eligible £200 a year better off.

The reforms are aimed at couples where one partner has not used all of their personal allowance or does not work at all and could particularly benefit stay-at-home parents.

I have mentioned before in this column my goal to make Fylde a truly dementia friendly community as part of the Prime Minister’s challenge on the condition.

This week I have been writing to public bodies in Fylde to see what measure they have in place to help staff deal with the specific needs of people suffering from this cruel condition.

Fylde is a constituency with an ageing population making dementia a key concern locally, with many people’s lives having been touched by this tragedy. It is my aim to make sure those residents receive the best possible treatment, both in a clinical sense and when out in our communities.

Many people suffering from dementia say it makes them feel lonely and isolated and it is up to all of us to make sure we treat them with empathy and understanding.

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