Lansley defends DoH's reluctance to publish NHS reform 'risk register'

Health secretary Andrew Lansley has defended the DoH over its reluctance to publish a report outlining the risk of NHS reforms.

Mr Lansley: reluctant to make the NHS reform risk register public
Mr Lansley: reluctant to make the NHS reform risk register public

Last week the Information Commission ruled that the DoH breached the Freedom of Information Act by failing to provide a copy of the risk register requested by former shadow health secretary John Healey.

Speaking at the NHS Employers conference in Liverpool on Tuesday, the health secretary defended the DoH’s reluctance to make the register public, claiming it was a document designed purely for internal use.

'It is an internal mechanism where we encourage people internally to present as it were to the board, to the department, their description of what the greatest potential risk might be and to express it in open and frank terms. Our job then is to mitigate those risks'.

Mr Lansley said that publishing the risks in the form that they are presented to the departmental board would be ‘completely misleading’.

‘And to do it a year later is even more misleading because it will take no account of all the subsequent mitigation,’ he added.

Mr Lansley claimed that anything within the register of relevance to the health reforms, had already been included in the impact assessment that accompanied the Health Bill.

‘All of the costs and the benefits and the risks associated with the reform processes are actually all captured in that,’ he said.

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