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The hidden purpose of the NHS reform is privatisation, says professor of public health

Published on 15/02/2012

A letter from a professor of public health has voiced concerns that the hidden purpose of the Health and Social Care Bill is to privatise health services in Britain.

Allyson Pollock, professor of public health at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, has written a letter in The Lancet entitled “A flawed NHS Bill with a hidden purpose”.

The letter states that the Bill and current amendments ‘fail to safeguard the core principles of universal care’. The Health Secretary will no longer have to provide a healthcare system free at the point of use.

Instead, groups of GPs called CCGs will be able to profit from their practises and will no longer be responsible for geographically defined areas.

This will enable them to ‘pick and choose’ patients, excluding those who suffer from numerous costly illnesses.

The letter concludes that patients will be increasingly required to pay top-up fees for treatment, or rely on private medical insurance.

Allyson Pollock’s opinion is shared by other opponents of the Bill, including the editor-in-chief of The Lancet.

However, the Prime Minister and the Health Secretary continue to insist that the NHS will remain free to patients at the point of delivery.

A Department of Health spokesman dismissed Professor Pollock's arguments as "simply nonsense".

Recent risk assessments from the four English health regions have also warned that there is a likelihood that the proposed reforms will reduce safety and patient care.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2012

Categories:  NHS and Hospitals
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