BMA warns NHS faces 'exceptionally testing time' in 2011

Health secretary Andrew Lansley's reform plans are 'unnecessarily ambitious' and have left the NHS facing an 'exceptionally testing time' in 2011, the BMA has warned.

Dr Meldrum: the government is pushing ahead with an unnecessarily ambitious programme of reform.
Dr Meldrum: the government is pushing ahead with an unnecessarily ambitious programme of reform.

In his New Year message to doctors, BMA chairman Dr Hamish Meldrum warned: ‘Against a backdrop of an unprecedented financial challenge, with efficiency savings of at least £20bn being sought in England alone, the government is pushing ahead at break-neck speed, with an unnecessarily ambitious programme of reform.’

Dr Meldrum predicted the profession would rise to the challenge, and backed plans to boost clinical involvement in the design and delivery of healthcare along with plans to replace ‘crude targets’ with a greater focus on quality and outcomes.

But he said: ‘We have real concerns about other aspects of the planned reforms.

'In particular, the lack of detail in many areas, the increasing emphasis on competition and the market, and the significant risks created by the process of rushed and unnecessarily risky transition, particularly at a time of such financial stringency.’

Meanwhile, BMA Scotland chairman Dr Brian Keighley urged the government not to cut medical posts.

‘It is disappointing that over the course of this year, cuts to the NHS workforce and attacks on doctors’ contracts have been identified by politicians as the way to navigate the NHS through these difficult financial times.’

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Breakthrough for state GP indemnity as second MDO agrees terms on historic liabilities

Breakthrough for state GP indemnity as second MDO agrees terms on historic liabilities

A second medical defence organisation (MDO) has agreed terms for the government to...

Labour pledges to boost GP training places by 50%

Labour pledges to boost GP training places by 50%

The Labour party has announced plans to increase the number of GP trainees in England...

Northern Ireland unveils £27m GP funding boost for 2019/20

Northern Ireland unveils £27m GP funding boost for 2019/20

Investment in general practice in Northern Ireland will rise by £26.76m during the...

'How I survived a bewildering ten-month investigation by the GMC'

'How I survived a bewildering ten-month investigation by the GMC'

How does the experience of a GMC investigation impact on the lives of doctors? One...

90% of patients would recommend their GP practice to friends or family

90% of patients would recommend their GP practice to friends or family

Nine in 10 people would recommend their GP practice to a friend or family member,...

NHS documentary spells out threat to future of the health service

NHS documentary spells out threat to future of the health service

A documentary film appearing in cinemas across the UK next month tells how the NHS...