At a Pathfinder Listening and Learning Network Event in London, Professor Steve Field said: ‘I’m convinced GP and clinical leadership is absolutely the right way forward.
'On the ground that’s what people want. There doesn’t seem to be any dissent on that. We should push forward with clinical commissioning as soon as possible. That will help us meet all the challenges.’
Speaking 48 hours before the listening event closes, he also urged the 100 or so GP consortia leads present to involve salaried GPs in commissioning.
NHS chief executive Sir David Nicholson said: ‘I am absolutely sure that we will see the benefits of this over the next few years.’
Health secretary Andrew Lansley was also present and in full listening mode passing between the dozen or so tables of GPs and answering their questions.
He said: ‘Why pause the Health Bill? Clearly there have been misrepresentations of what’s happening in the Bill and we wanted to make clear through legislation that this is not about privatisation, charging, private sector cherry picking, competition and fragmentation of services.’