William Eichler 06 January 2016

Former minister to propose cross-party health and social care commission

Former minister to propose cross-party health and social care commission

A cross-party commission to review future funding and structure of health and care services in England has been characterised as a step towards ‘a new Beveridge Report.’

The commission will be proposed by Norman Lamb in the House of Commons this afternoon under the Ten Minute Rule Bill and has been welcomed by the NHS Confederation.

Stephen Dorrell, the chair of the NHS Confederation, has written to Norman Lamb and outlined four arguments which he believes support the MP’s 2015 call for ‘a new Beveridge Report’:

• The need to develop new funding and management structures that deliver more joined up and supportive care, reflecting the needs of individuals.
• The implications of the less-than-10 per cent growth in public funding for health and social care service versus the expected 50% increase in cumulative demand, and the ‘artificial distinction’ between the health and social care.
• Ensuring time is ‘well spent’ on working out an agreed framework for the commission on a cross-party basis, to ensure ‘sufficient breadth of political and professional support.’
• The need to consider how ‘the whole health and care spend’ can be used to get best value for public money.

Mr Dorrell said: ‘Any commission or independent inquiry will need to support or indeed help accelerate the work to transform services in the NHS and social care which is already ongoing, following the publication of the 2015 Challenge and the Five Year Forward View.’

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