Nurse involvement in GP commissioning must not be 'tokenism'

Nurse and specialist roles in GP commissioning must not simply be politicial 'tokenism', the Health Bill review panel's chairman has said.

Professor Field: 'One of the issues is how to get better nursing and specialist involvement in commissioning rather than just having tokenism'
Professor Field: 'One of the issues is how to get better nursing and specialist involvement in commissioning rather than just having tokenism'

Speaking exclusively to GP, Professor Steve Field said some of the concerns around the Health Bill are well-founded but others are being made for ‘political reasons’.

‘One of the issues is how to get better nursing and specialist involvement in commissioning rather than just having tokenism. But what we must not do is lose some of the enthusiasm of the pathfinders.’

He added that the NHS Future Forum is now going back through White Paper consultation responses to help move the process forward.

Professor Field said one of the ‘genuine concerns’ around the Health Bill is that nurses and specialists have not been involved and ‘feel left out.’

He said: ‘It is blindingly obvious that there are some big areas of concern. Some of those are real and need to be addressed.'

Meanwhile, the NHS Future Forum will report back to government about its findings in June, Professor Field added.

He said the panel will advise the government on whether aspects of the Bill are problematic because of unintended consequences, or if concerns can be dealt with through the assurance process or secondary legislation.

He said: ‘This is not about me providing a new Bill. It is about hearing about the concerns, internalising them and offering information to the government.’

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