BMA council to step up opposition to health reform

The BMA is to step up its opposition to the Health Bill and demand 'major changes' to the proposed NHS reforms.

Dr Meldrum: 'The government should not be left in any doubt about the strength of feeling among the medical profession'
Dr Meldrum: 'The government should not be left in any doubt about the strength of feeling among the medical profession'

The BMA council met on Wednesday to discuss how to take forward the concerns expressed by doctors at the special representative meeting (SRM) the previous day.

The BMA is demanding 'major changes' to the Health Bill and is considering 'a variety of options' to achieve its aims, said a BMA spokesman. The association will publicise its concerns, focusing on health regulator Monitor's role in enforcing competition.

Tuesday's meeting called for the Health Bill to be withdrawn. Delegates narrowly voted against opposing the Health Bill 'in its entirety', choosing instead to continue to try to shape the reforms.

BMA chairman Dr Hamish Meldrum said the government could no longer claim it had the support of GPs.

'Ministers can no longer continue to cite the often reluctant and pragmatic decision by GPs to get involved in commissioning groups as endorsement of their NHS reforms,' he said.

'Following yesterday’s SRM, the government should not be left in any doubt about the strength of feeling among the medical profession. Many doctors recognise the need to change how the NHS is run, but have serious concerns about the scale and nature of the planned reforms which are hugely risky and potentially highly damaging.'

 

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