Boris Johnson's no-deal Brexit will 'put lives at risk' this winter

Shadow Health Secretary Jon Ashworth cast doubt over the NHS' ability to cope with the busy winter season. (PA)

no-deal Brexit just before winter would put lives at risk, Boris Johnson has been warned.

Shadow Health Secretary Jon Ashworth told talk show Sophy Ridge On Sunday he believes Mr Johnson is “playing with people’s lives” considering Britain’s current reliance on importing medicines.

Mr Ashworth said he didn’t think the NHS could cope with the pressures of the winter season, despite the £1.8 billion in extra funding announced by Mr Johnson’s administration over the weekend.

“No-deal will be a catastrophe for the National Health Service, it will be a catastrophe for our smooth access to medicines when we import 37 million packs of medicine every month from the EU, it will be a catastrophe for our economy,” he said over the weekend.

Mr Johnson announced which hospitals would receive an extra £1.8 billion in extra funding on Monday. (PA)

“I think to push us out of the European Union at the end of October, beginning of November, on a no-deal basis as we are going into winter, which is always a difficult time for the NHS, is the height of irresponsibility when we know a no-deal Brexit will be disastrous for the NHS.

“It will put lives at risk. That is the gamble that Boris Johnson is taking this October, November. He’s playing with people’s lives.”


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But Mr Ashworth said there are cross-party efforts to halt such an exit.

“We are working with MPs across the House of Commons and we will work to stop no-deal,” he added.

Several opinion polls show the Conservatives have a five point lead over Labour. (PA)

It comes as Mr Johnson announced which hospitals around the UK would receive his £1.8 billion funding boost on Monday.

But Mr Ashworth warned that the increased NHS spending could just be a ploy to lure voters ahead of a potential election.

‘There’s speculation in the newspapers again today that the Tories are preparing for a general election, that’s what today’s announcement is all about,’ he added on Sunday.

‘We will see if this money is ever delivered.’