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Sunday 27th May 2018

McDonald's to sponsor hospitals?

20th March 2008

Sponsorship of health services could see firms such as McDonald’s or Virgin offering financial support to NHS hospital wards.


The move comes under plans announced by the government to allow sponsorship of health services and create a new era of open competition between hospitals.

The initiative will allow private firms to create brand awareness with logos on hospital property but would not permit them to gain commercial advantage.

The plans were announced by health minister Ben Bradshaw under moves to give patients more choice over the private or NHS hospitals in which they are treated from 1 April.

Hospitals can compete for custom and promote their own services.

There is no limit on how much hospitals can spend on advertising but the guidance code warns: “Providers will be expected to recognise the potential effect on the reputation of the NHS of disproportionate expenditure on promotional activity.?

Hospitals will also be able to send direct marketing to patients but it should not cause fear or distress “without good reason.?

And the code adds: “Marketing communication addressed to, targeted at or featuring children should not exploit their credulity, loyalty, vulnerability or lack of experience.?

Testimonials can be used by hospitals as long as they have not been paid for and hospitals can also promote areas of good patient care.

Mr Bradshaw said: “People would like to have more control and be more involved in the decisions about their illness and treatment. More choice will also help drive up quality and standards across the NHS.?


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