NHS facing tough times28th June 2011
The chairman of the British Medical Association, Dr Hamish Meldrum, has warned that the NHS is facing "very difficult times".
He told representatives at a meeting in Cardiff that "the only way the NHS can come through, is for there to be a real and shared commitment between all of us who have a stake in its future - a commitment to build trust - trust between and amongst governments, staff, employers, patients and the public".
He explained that the government's planned reform of the health service in England, financial pressures and pension problems were all key issues that people working in the health service would encounter in the coming months.
He said that while the government had made some "positive moves" regarding the listening exercise on NHS reform, it wasn't enough.
He added that the government should "build" on what they learned instead of throwing it away with "short-term cost-cutting of frontline care...[or] poorly planned major service changes".
Dr Meldrum stated that the Health and Social Care Bill had changed significantly since it was originally presented, but there were still many things that could be changed and improved.
He underlined the fact that the health service was facing huge financial pressures: "The challenge of ever-increasing demand, finite resources and the most difficult financial situation the NHS – in all four nations – the biggest it has ever faced in its 63 years."
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