GPC hopes for growing dissent among MPs over Health Bill

GP leaders say comments by a Conservative MP and former GP may provide a platform for politicians of all sides to speak out against the Health Bill.

Dr Wollaston: reform concerns (Photograph: Apex)
Dr Wollaston: reform concerns (Photograph: Apex)

GPC deputy chairman Dr Richard Vautrey said 'deep and serious' discussions were going on within the Conservative party and the wider coalition.

The claim came after Dr Sarah Wollaston, a GP and Conservative MP for Totnes in Devon, highlighted concerns over NHS reform plans. She said: 'My concern is really with (economic regulator) Monitor, and whether every commissioning decision GPs take is subject to scrutiny and competition law.

'We have to be careful not to deter clinicians who would be brilliant at service redesign.'

She urged the DoH to liberate GP commissioners to choose NHS providers where they offer the best quality without fear of legal challenge from 'private cherry-pickers'.

Dr Wollaston said there is a danger some of the best PCT managers are being wiped from the NHS memory. She said: 'If they all disappeared and GP commissioners had to rely on private sector commissioning, it could start to look like privatisation.'

Dr Vautrey said: 'I hope this reflects a wider discussion that will take place once the Bill is announced in parliament and that we will see politicians from all sides standing against some of the proposals.'

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