NHS hospital management to go overseas5th September 2011
The management of up to 20 NHS hospitals in England could be handed to overseas companies.
Emails released by the government under a Freedom of Information request to non-profit investigations organisation Spinwatch, revealed that discussion by senior officials have taken place along those hospitals.
They are reported, in the Observer newspaper, to show that consulting firm McKinsey was acting as a broker between the Department of Health and foreign organisations for contracts worth hundreds of millions of pounds.
It is understood that the 10-20 trusts being looked at tend to be the worst run and represents less than a tenth of trusts.
The Department of Health has said it was not unusual to hold meetings with external organisations and that NHS staff and assets would always remain wholly owned by the NHS.
With the government in the process of trying to overhaul the way the NHS in England works, health secretary Andrew Lansley said the changes would give more power and choice to patients.
However, he described claims the government aimed to privatise the NHS as “ludicrous scaremongering.”
But Lib Dem peer Shirley Williams said she had had major concerns over the reform plans.
Writing in the Observer, she said: “I am not against a private element in the NHS, which may bring innovation and good practice, provided it is within the framework of a public service - complementary but not wrecking.”
Christina McAnea from the union Unison said voting through this Bill would “be the end of the NHS as we know it.”
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Title: NHS hospital management to go overseas
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 19606
Date Added: 5th Sep 2011