Addressing the NHS Alliance annual conference in Manchester on Wednesday, Mr O'Brien said more openness and transparency were required when private consultancies are used.
‘We have to look at areas where we spend money we perhaps don't have to. What I don't want to see is consultants being employed to make difficult decisions. People are paid well to make difficult decisions and they should make them,' said the health minister.
In their response to a Health Select Committee report on management consultant use in the NHS the DoH admitted information on outsourcing management was 'neither consistent or complete across the organisation.'
The report recommends all PCTs, SHAs and the DoH publish details of all companies employed by them and the projects they are working on. A list of the top ten most expensive daily rates will also be made available, as well as sample contracts for peer review and analysis.