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'Unacceptable' high risk of NHS reforms to drive private medical cover uptake?

Published on 15/12/2010
A new report criticising the government's plans for reforming the NHS could encourage more people to take out private medical cover instead.

Think tank Civitas has released a report claiming that the government's reforms, designed to increase efficiency by removing levels of management thought unnecessary, carry "unacceptably high" risks.

Furthermore, they could lead to a drop in NHS productivity, creating "rationing and the return of long waits".

Under the government's plans, primary care trusts (PCTs) would be abolished and control of most of the NHS's budget handed to consortia of GPs, who would commission treatments from the health service.

However, the Civitas report, entitled A Risky Business: The White paper and the NHS, warns the move could backfire.

The report's author James Gubb explains: "The Coalition Government needs to stop repeating the mistakes of the past by mandating wholesale structural change.

"The risks of ripping up the current commissioning structure in its entirety in favour of new, inexperienced, organisations at a time when the NHS must focus squarely on driving productivity like never before are unquantified and in all likelihood unacceptably high."

All 151 PCTs in England will be scrapped under the scheme, with GPs taking over from 2013.
© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2010


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