"The NHS will last as long as there are folk left with the faith to fight for it"
Aneurin Bevan

Thursday, 8 September 2011


Read this:
  1. the removal of all references to promoting competition whether directly or indirectly. 
  2. any duty to promote choice being made subsidiary to duties to promote fair access, equality of outcomes, and integrated services. 
  3. the removal of the facility for transferring NHS assets, including land, to third party providers. 
  4. retaining the cap on Private Patient Income by NHS Foundation trusts. 
  5. the restoration of the duty of the Secretary of State to provide or secure the provision of, healthcare services, and the reinstatement of the power of the Secretary of State to delegate his functions to NHS commissioners and to direct them as necessary. 
  6. the retention of the ability of the local authority overview and scrutiny function to refer significant services changes to the Secretary of State for adjudication. 
  7. providing that Health and Well-being Boards (HWBs) have a majority of elected members and are able refer unresolved disputes with local commissioners to the Secretary of State rather than to a national qango. 
  8. the explicit prohibition of the wholesale outsourcing of commissioning work to private companies. 
  9. guaranteeing that commissioning groups are fully co-terminous with social services local authorities, except where HWBs and local authorities agree otherwise, and are funded solely on the basis of the health needs of the population. 
  10. the removal of the power to pay financial incentives to practitioners as a means of influencing their referral behaviour. 
  11. rejection of any personal health budget scheme which allow users to spend NHS funds on private health insurance or as a top up towards private health care or to buy services or treatments judged too ineffective or inefficient for the NHS to buy. 
  12. the inclusion of a duty on all NHS bodies, when arranging with non-NHS bodies to provide services, to avoid any risk of essential NHS services (including teaching and research) being destabilised in an unplanned way through loss of income or case-load 
  13. ensuring Directors of Public Health remain independent sources of expert advice.
Is this Labour's key objections to the Health and Social Care Bill? No. This is the objection from the Social Liberal Democrats Forum (Dr Evan Harris' group).

I tried to find a succinct list from Labour giving their opposition to the Bill, but I couldn't find one.
Labour could be re-elected at the next election on a huge majority if it exposed Lansley's Bill and then campaigned against it. We hear so little from Labour that we do not know if they want the Bill or not. We do not know if Labour wants to be re-elected.

All the talk at the moment is what this Lib Dem peer, or that Lib Dem peer will attempt to amend when the Bill reaches the Lords. Why aren't we hearing the same thing about Labour peers? Is it because the labour working peers are all Blair's chums who couldn't care less?

Labour is the party of the NHS. But if Labour does not raise its game on opposing the Health and Social Care Bill it will lose this title; or worse, it may get the name of the party who failed to raise a finger to protect the NHS.

Meanwhile, if you are a Lib Dem go to the conference and vote for Dr Charles West's motion. If you are Labour then campaign that these 13 points form Labour's objection to the Bill. If you are Conservative then you should be ashamed of your party.

(Updated to get the name of SLF right.)

1 comment:

  1. Debbie Abrahams wrote a decent piece on left foot forward