GP rallies 100 CCG members to oppose Health Bill

A GP has backing from 100 clinical commissioning group (CCG) members who think commissioning can be supported without backing the Health Bill.

Dr Louise Irvine (left) joined demonstrators who blocked Westminster Bridge in October protest at the government's NHS reforms.
Dr Louise Irvine (left) joined demonstrators who blocked Westminster Bridge in October protest at the government's NHS reforms.

Lewisham GP Dr Louise Irvine said she is planning submit a letter to The Times rejecting the Bill.

‘We’re writing a letter and so far I’ve had 100 replies from clinical commissioning group (CCG) members who think you can support clinical commissioning without supporting the Bill.’

Dr Irvine said she was hoping to achieve 300 to 400 signatures from CCG members before submitting the letter to the newspaper next week.

A website allowing GPs to express their views on the Bill has also been set up, Dr Irvine said.

www.lobbyyourccg.blogspot.com hopes to gather GPs views ‘to publicise how doctors wish to improve the NHS and be involved with other health professionals in commissioning but that this does not indicate support for this unnecessary and unwanted Health Bill.’

The news comes as CCG chairman Dr Paul Bowen, and 70 CCG lead signatories, submitted a letter to The Times supporting the Bill.

The letter warned that abandoning the Bill would be detrimental to the progress of clinical commissioning.

Dr Irvine said that the content of the letter was not representative of the views of most GPs.

‘I don’t believe that ordinary GPs actively support the Bill. I don’t think [the signatories] have a right to sign a letter purporting to express the views of GPs and CCG members.’

Dr Irvine said it was more important than ever for GPs and CCGs to express their views on the Bill.

‘The fight for the Bill has reached it peak.’

Dr Irvine said that she planned to send a letter with the backing of her local colleges to her own CCG in Lewisham, calling for it to publicly renounce the Bill.

‘I’m hoping other GPs around the country will do something similar,’ she said.

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