Monitor challenge foundation trust freedoms19th February 2009
Foundation trust regulator Monitor has launched a challenge to the government in parliament.
It is seeking to not only protect foundation trust freedoms but also its role as their regulator amid fears that proposals in the Health Bill compromise foundation trusts' independence by requiring them to send quality accounts to the health secretary.
Baroness Murphy, a non-executive director of Monitor, has tabled an amendment which would instead have the quality accounts reported to foundation trust governors, Monitor itself and to parliament, as financial accounts are at present in a bid to preserve lines of accountability.
She said: "As drafted, the bill fails to recognise the local accountability of foundation trusts to their governors, and national accountability to parliament. Nor does the bill recognise the existing reporting arrangements for foundation trusts, so it risks duplication and confusion."
Monitor has had previous disagreements with the Department of Health.
However, the DH has said there was no plan for quality accounts to be reported to Monitor and parliament.
Foundation Trust Network director Sue Slipman said she believe Monitor was trying to secure its role rather than change it but that foundation trusts did need clarity to their accountability.
"For us it is about having clear lines of accountability for foundation trusts", she said.
Monitor policy director Jonathan Marron said: "We're working with the DH, the Care Quality Commission and NHS East of England on a reporting framework to help NHS organisations develop a clear narrative explaining the quality of the care they offer and how they plan to improve this."
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Title: Monitor challenge foundation trust freedoms
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 10279
Date Added: 19th Feb 2009