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Lib Dem backbenchers are preparing to revolt in opposition to the government’s health and social care bill, demanding further changes be made.
Former Liberal Democrat Evan Harris and Lady Shirley Williams plan to stage a motion in Birmingham to draw attention to their views, after they gained more support than they expected in a vote this week. 16 out of 24 liberal democrat backbenchers voted against the changes, even after amendments made as an outcome of the listening exercise.
Lady Williams has shown concern that the amendments didn’t go far enough in …

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In his speech to the NHS Confederation conference in Manchester, Andrew Lansley called on NHS managers to “regain the momentum” on restructuring the health service, following changes to the health and social care bill.
“The pause is over. It’s now time to act,” he stated.
Lansley described the listening exercise as “an unusual step”, but said the bill has been improved as a result of pause, which was carried out by the Future Forum group led by Professor Steve Field. The health secretary also said the pause had helped the government to …

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The cost of carrying out the listening exercise in light of objections to NHS reforms was fairly minimal according to Richard Douglas, director general for policy, strategy and finance at the Department of Health.
The cost of the listening exercise, carried out to give health professionals the chance to air any concerns about the government’s new health and social care bill, will reach, “tens of thousands of pounds, maybe £100,000 tops,” he suggested.
Speaking at the House of Commons health committee, Douglas also added that he does not anticipate the changes to …

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Doctors have called for the controversial health and social care bill be withdrawn all together as it’s plans are inadequate to protect the NHS.
At the British Medical Association’s (BMA) annual conference doctors’ representatives expressed disappointment that changes to the bill, agreed by ministers after the NHS Future Forum report, do not go far enough, adding that plans, “fail to satisfactorily address the concerns of the profession.”
Furthermore, the conference ignored the reassurance of the BMA leader Dr Hamish Meldrum, who warned that calls to withdraw the bill altogether would jeopardize the BMA’s …

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David Cameron has announced that, unless there are radical changes throughout the NHS, it faces a funding crisis within the next four years. In a speech to NHS staff in Ealing yesterday he declared that sitting back and sticking with the “status quo” would create a funding gap of £20 billion. The PM stated that a crisis in funding would lead to over-crowded wards and fewer treatments before adding that borrowing more money was not a solution because we, “can’t afford to,” and asking people to start paying at the …