NHS shake-up 'hands funding powers to GPs'
Published: 9th Jul 2010 05:05:28
Doctors could be handed responsibility and funding for most health services under a radical shake-up of the NHS in England, under ministerial plans.
Local trusts and strategic health authorities would be sharply scaled back to make way for their new role.
Health Secretary Andrew Lansley believes GPs are best placed to understand patients' needs and to decide where money should be spent.
But there are concerns GPs may not have the skills or will to take on the role.
Others have questioned how they would be held accountable.
Discussions with doctors' representatives over the plans are continuing, and the government has confirmed it will publish further details in a white paper next week.
They involve setting up groups of practices which would work together in consortia, then buy in management skills, possibly from people doing the same job for existing primary care trusts.
At present, the government gives funds to local trusts which pay for patients in their area to be treated in hospital.
Under the new proposals, doctors would receive the money instead and pay hospitals directly for referrals.
BBC health correspondent Adam Brimelow said: "After six-and-a-half years shadowing the post in opposition, Mr Lansley has come in with detailed and radical plans to change the NHS.
The NHS budget has been protected by the coalition government, and is not subject to the severe cuts of other Whitehall departments.
But the health service has been told to save up to £20bn by 2014 to help it cope with the ageing population, rising drug prices and lifestyle changes such as obesity.
The Royal College of Nursing has claimed almost 10,000 posts - double the number from two months ago - are being cut despite government promises to protect frontline services.
At 07:00:12 in WalesCampaigners calling for a Cardiff reservoir to re-open will visit the prime minister to press their case to restore fishing and sailing there.
At 06:59:50 in EnglandA man and woman found dead in a Nottinghamshire house were stabbed, it has been confirmed.
At 06:56:53 in BusinessGeneral Motors has asked a US court to bar some lawsuits relating to its recall over faulty ignition switches.
At 06:55:04 in EnglandOne person has been arrested after three children were found dead at an address in south London.
At 06:38:57 in Northern IrelandThe Orange Order and a republican ex-prisoners' organisation have lent their support to a new course at Queen's University (QUB) that examines the use of public space to express identity.
At 06:36:03 in Northern IrelandTwo tributes to the late poet Seamus Heaney are to be held in Dublin later.
At 06:32:35 in EnglandA man has been charged following a fire at a house in Teesside.
At 06:16:09 in Northern IrelandAn ex-IRA man has made new allegations about Gerry Adams, in which he raises questions about the Sinn Féin leader's claim to have never been in the IRA.
At 06:11:26 in EnglandThe number of rats being reported by the public across Cornwall has increased by almost 50% in the past 12 months, council figures have revealed.
At 06:05:27 in EnglandSix historical buildings have been added to a register of "at risk" properties in Gloucester.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2010. NHS shake-up 'hands funding powers to GPs' [Online] (Updated 9th Jul 2010)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/73691/NHS-shake-up-hands-funding-powers-to-GPs [Accessed 23rd Apr 2014]
News In Other Categories
High food prices mean a third of UK adults are struggling to afford to eat healthily, warns a charity.
William Shakespeare is the UK's greatest cultural icon, according to the results of an international survey released to mark the 450th anniversary of his birth.
A meeting to determine how the internet should be governed gets underway in Sao Paulo, Brazil later.