DOWNING Street has refused to confirm if the Prime Minister and his family use private healthcare as the NHS is in major crisis, claiming it is “not in the public interest”.

Rishi Sunak is registered with a private GP practice that charges £250 for a same day, half-hour consultation and offers appointments at the evenings and weekends as well as home visits, it has been reported.

But Sunak has previously ducked questions about his use of private healthcare and now the Prime Minister’s official spokesman has again refused to confirm any details, despite the escalating crisis facing the NHS.

READ MORE: Prime Minister registered with private GP offering £250 consultations

Asked whether it was fair to say Rishi Sunak did not have “first-hand experience” of what it was like to be treated by the NHS amid reports he makes use of private healthcare, the spokesman said: “You’ll know we don’t get into the PM’s personal affairs in that way, as you would expect.

“I think it would be wholly wrong to claim the Prime Minister is not fully aware of the challenges our health service is facing.

“It is why he has prioritised funding for the NHS in the autumn statement at a time of constrained public finances.

“The Prime Minister has a number of meetings very regularly on the NHS. It is one of his top priorities.”

Pressed on whether it was in the public interest for people to know about Sunak’s healthcare arrangements, the spokesman added: “No, I don’t think getting into medical issues for a prime minister’s family is in the public interest.”

Sunak has previously refused to answer questions about whether he has private healthcare, saying it was “not appropriate” to talk “about one’s family’s healthcare”.

During his summer leadership campaign he said he would not talk about his children’s medical history when pressed on when he and his family had last used the health service, but added: “Of course we use the NHS”.

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However past Tory Prime Ministers have taken a different approach.

Margaret Thatcher was asked whether she trusted the NHS enough to use it during a press conference in 1987.

She replied she had health insurance to enable her to “go into hospital on the day I want, at the time I want, and with a doctor I want”.

And David Cameron often spoke of his family’s experiences of using the NHS during his time in Downing Street.