Jeremy Hunt faces legal action over attempts to ‘Americanise’ the NHS


Legal motion is being taken towards Jeremy Hunt and the Department of Health over their proposals to restructure the NHS, The Independent can reveal. 

Plans have been tabled to transform the NHS right into a public/personal enterprise, which critics say is predicated upon the US personal well being insurance-based system.

Senior well being professionals and campaigners have now come collectively to take authorized motion and demand a judicial evaluate, to make sure full parliamentary scrutiny of the proposals.

Under NHS England’s new plans, the boundary between well being and social care could be dissolved and new methods and constructions would enable various funding sources, finally resulting in the creation of latest healthcare overseers known as Accountable Care Organisations (ACOs).

ACOs would allow industrial, non-NHS our bodies to run well being and social providers. They may very well be awarded large contracts to handle and supply entire packages of care, permitting the ACOs to both present the NHS service themselves or sub-contract it.

This means ACOs may have management over the allocation of NHS and taxpayers’ cash however their accountability for spending it and their obligations to the general public shall be underneath industrial contracts, not authorities statutes.

Solicitors representing outstanding NHS campaigners have now contacted Mr Hunt to tell him that they’re searching for a judicial evaluate in an try to make sure parliament can absolutely scrutinise the proposals.

They declare the Department of Health’s session course of was restricted, insufficient and illegal as a result of lack of nationwide session or parliamentary approval.


The Health Secretary has lengthy been the focus of protests by NHS workers and supporters, as right here throughout an indication in 2016 (AFP/Getty Images)

Dr Colin Hutchinson, Professor Allyson Pollock, Professor Sue Richards and Dr Graham Winyard are all working collectively to place the case to the Department of Health. 

Prof Pollock, a BMA council member and co-author of the NHS reinstatement invoice, stated the proposals have been an try and Americanise well being care in England and that the NHS was progressively being dismantled.

“Our NHS has been a global mannequin for international locations all over the world for a well being system that represents equity, effectivity and freedom from the concern of sickness. It has offered well being look after all free on the level of supply by way of public funding, public possession and public accountability,” Prof Pollock advised The Independent.

“Its reputation has endured since 1948 and is an emblem of all that’s respectable about Britain. However it’s being starved of funds and progressively dismantled and changed with company constructions often known as Accountable Care Organisations which can facilitate the introduction of American-style healthcare methods.

“These newest proposals are the tipping level in steps in direction of the Americanisation of England’s well being care.

“The authorities has not solely didn’t seek the advice of the folks of England about its plans but it surely has failed to put its proposals earlier than parliament.  In so doing, it’s performing beneath the statutory radar in trying the Americanisation of our well being care and this elementary re-organisation by stealth.

“We call on everyone to support this legal action against the Secretary of State for health to ensure proper national public consultation and full parliamentary oversight and scrutiny,” she added.

The Independent has contacted the Department of Health for a remark. 

The information comes as NHS bosses reportedly issued a “cry for help” after years of funding cuts.

NHS and social care leaders have written to Chancellor Philip Hammond to demand a rise within the tempo of funding and an finish to public sector pay restraint.

The heads of teams representing your entire NHS, medical royal faculties and a bunch of UK charities have co-signed a letter to the Treasury prematurely of the upcoming funds.

It follows evaluation from regulator the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which stated that front-line providers are actually in a “precarious condition”.

The letter says: “Even if the Government were only to stick to its current commitment, we believe the remaining £5.2bn should not be reserved for the last two years of the Parliament. It should instead be brought forward now to address significant current challenges.”

Clive Lewis MP has endorsed requires a judicial evaluate and stated the plans have been an try and “erode and meddle” till a US healthcare fashion system was in place.

“I, like many, really feel more and more alarmed by what is occurring to the NHS. It’s perilously threatened. Jeremy Hunt’s reply to me in well being questions signifies that he feels he has the precise to alter elementary constructions irrespective of those that work in, use and care concerning the NHS, with out an Act of Parliament and with out explaining correctly why these industrial organisations are wanted and the way they may enhance care,” Mr Lewis advised The Independent.

“He’s incorrect. If we don’t keep vigilant the Tories will erode and meddle till they get the US healthcare system they seem to have deliberate.

“The Labour get together convention voted unanimously to oppose ACOs and we should combat Hunt and Simon Stevens [CEO of NHS England] each step of the way in which till a Labour authorities can reinstate the NHS as a publicly offered and funded service,” Mr Lewis added.

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