A PARLIAMENTARY candidate has accused the Conservatives of introducing a ‘nurse tax’.

Kamran Hussain, who is standing in Leeds North West for the Liberal Democrats, has used the term to describe the extension of a £400 per year immigration surcharge to include EU health professionals.

Mr Hussain said: “This could lead to a shortage of nurses in our hospitals in Leeds and put those who do come here under unfair financial pressure.”

Green Party candidate Martin Hemingway said: “A tax on the EU health professionals who keep the NHS functioning seems designed to damage the health service,”

Conservative candidate Stewart Harper said: “The Immigration Health Surcharge was introduced principally to combat the issue of ‘health tourism’.”

Other parties with candidates currently set to stand in the seat were also asked for comments.