Lansley: Recommendations are good for patients

Lansley: Recommendations are good for patients
Lansley: Recommendations are good for patients

Andrew Lansley, health secretary, defends the government's U-turn over the NHS reforms:

"I said two months ago we would pause, listen, reflect and improve our plans. Our commitment to engage and improve the bill has been genuine and has been rewarded with an independent, expert and immensely valuable report and recommendations from the NHS Future Forum.

"I have accepted the report's recommendations because they are good for patients. The NHS has a clear map for the way ahead.

"It is owned by the patients it serves by doctors, nurses and health professionals, whose leadership is essential to deliver continuing improvements in quality of care for patients"

"We will make significant changes to implement those recommendations and, in some cases, offer further specific assurances which we know have been sought.

"The bill will make clear that the secretary of state will have a duty to promote a comprehensive health service, as in the 1946 Act, and be accountable for securing its provision and for the oversight of the national bodies charged with doing so.

"Monitor's core duty will be to protect and promote the interests of patients. We will remove its duty to 'promote' competition as though that were an end in itself.

"Instead it will be under a duty to support services integrated around the needs of patients and the continuous improvement of quality. It will have a power to tackle specific abuses and restrictions of competition that act against patients' interests.

"Competition will be a means by which NHS commissioners are able to improve the quality of services for patients.

"In a number of areas, we will make the timetable for change more flexible: to ensure that no one is forced to take on new responsibilities before they are ready, while enabling those who are ready to make faster progress.

"Strengthened by the Forum's report and recommendations, we will now ask the House to re-engage with delivering the changes and the modernisation the NHS needs."


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