The promise comes at the time when Foreign Secretary Liz Truss is pulling away from Mr Sunak in the race to replace Boris Johnson as Tory Party leader and Prime Minister. While speaking to The Telegraph, the ex-Chancellor said it was “not right” that patients were failing to turn up for consultations, scans and check-ups, “taking those slots away from people who need [them]”.
Mr Sunak claimed he wanted to be “transformational” and “do something brave and… different”.
However, his rival Liz Truss has meanwhile unveiled plans to ensure students who get top grades are automatically invited to apply to Oxford or Cambridge.
She said: “I can be trusted to deliver as the education prime minister.”
Pledging to revive the “reforming zeal” of “the early days of the Coalition”, the former Chancellor said he would begin by levying fines in cases where patients fail to attend an appointment without providing sufficient notice to allow the surgery or hospital to offer the slot to others.
Patients will be given the “benefit of the doubt” on the first occasion but subsequent missed appointments would incur charges of £10 each time.
The system would be “temporary” as the NHS tries to clear the COVID-19 backlog of more than six million patients waiting for planned care.
Mr Sunak said that as Chancellor he “was frustrated that the focus of [the] Government was far more on spending money on public services … and there was not enough of a focus about reforming them”.
He added: “I want to be a transformational Prime Minister.”
“It’s a good example of a Conservative approach to that problem.”
Mr Sunak and Ms Truss are vying for Number 10 after reaching the final stage of the Conservative Party leadership contest.
The party’s membership will decide who will replace Mr Johnson, with the winner being announced on September 5.
During the contest, there have been noticeable clashes between the two candidates as they set out their rival visions for the UK’s future.
Earlier this month, they set out their plans for the economy and traded blows over one another’s policies.
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