Health Bill expected to become law early in 2012

The Health Bill will now reach the House of Lords in the October and is expected to become law in spring next year.

Labour health minister Baroness Glenys Thornton said: ‘We expect the bill to reach us in the autumn when it will go through its normal consideration in the Lords.’

Health minister Simon Burns announced last week that parts of the Health Bill would be recommitted to the public bill committee and amendments would be made, delaying its progress to the House of Lords.

Labour expects that a 'large chunk’ of the anticipated amendments would be presented to the public bill committee.

However there may be some amendments that aren’t considered by the public bill committee because the government is able to table amendments on the floor of the House of Commons, Labour says.

Labour expects the Bill to come back to the floor of the House of Commons in September.

The Bill is then expected to begin its passage in the House of Lords in early October where it will receive detailed scrutiny from the Lords.

Baroness Thornton said: ‘Everyone interested in the bill is already receiving briefing material from the very many stakeholders in the health field, which is entirely to be expected. This includes meetings and seminars which many of us have been attending throughout the last year.’

Once the Bill has passed through the Lords it will then go back to the House of Commons for what is known as the 'ping pong' stage.

Bits of the bill that are not agreed bounce between the two houses.

The Bill is then expected to become law in 2012.

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