Biggest revolution in the NHS for 60 years

Doctors are to be given sole responsibility for overseeing front-line care to patients under Coalition plans described as the biggest revolution in the NHS since its foundation 60 years ago.

Andrew Porter
The Telegraph [UK]
9 Jul 2010

The decision represents a victory for Andrew Lansley, the Health Secretary Photo: PA

About £80 [$120.5] billion will be distributed to family GPs in a move that will see strategic health authorities and primary care trusts scrapped.

The plan, contained in a white paper to be published next week, is designed to place key decisions about how patients are cared for in the hands of doctors who know them. Tens of thousands of administrative jobs in the health service will be lost as a result.

At present, funds are given by the Government to primary care trusts, which pay for patients from their area to be treated in hospital.

Under these plans, GPs — who are currently not responsible for paying for hospital referrals — would receive the money instead and pay the hospitals directly.

The change will be compulsory.

The Coalition hopes the new system will be less bureaucratic and give doctors and patients more control over treatment. GPs will also have to organise out-of-hours services, which may see family doctors offering 24-hour care once again.

The decision represents a victory for Andrew Lansley, the Health Secretary. He has been backed by David Cameron in his fight with the Treasury over his decision to give taxpayers’ cash directly to doctors.

George Osborne, the Chancellor, raised serious concerns about putting such a vast sum of money, thought to be between £60-£80billion, back in the hands of GPs…

The article continues at The Telegraph.

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