Lansley in 'fight of his life' over White Paper reforms

Former health secretary Andy Burnham has warned prime minister David Cameron to expect the 'fight of his life' over the NHS White Paper reforms.

Andy Burnham has accused the Conservatives of an 'epic U-turn' (Photograph: Charlie MacDonald)
Andy Burnham has accused the Conservatives of an 'epic U-turn' (Photograph: Charlie MacDonald)

Speaking to the Labour party conference in Manchester last week, Mr Burnham said Mr Cameron must 'put these dangerous plans on hold' and 'give the NHS the stability it needs'.

'If you don't, get ready for the fight of your life - and the public will be on our side, not yours,'

he said. The tub-thumping speech came as the union Unison secured a date to begin legal proceedings against health secretary Andrew Lansley.

The union claims Mr Lansley is initiating his sweeping White Paper reforms before there has been adequate consultation.

From 14 October the union will attend a court hearing to argue for a judicial review against the health secretary.

Representatives from rival union Unite told the Labour conference the White Paper was 'the biggest onslaught on the health service since 1948'.

Mr Burnham said the coalition government had 'no mandate' for the 'break-up of a successful NHS'.

'We have GPs wondering when they signed up to become the managers of markets and multi-million pound budgets.

'Patients aren't asking for it. GPs and NHS staff don't want it. The public did not vote for it. People will not forgive you for it,' he said.

Mr Burnham said the government had performed an 'epic U-turn' since its post-election promise of 'no more top-down reforms of the NHS'.

'It is nothing short of scandalous to spend up to £3 billion on a political experiment with our NHS at a time when every single penny is needed to maintain jobs and standards of patient care,' Mr Burnham said.

Visit GP's White Paper resource centre

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

Advance decisions to refuse treatment - what GPs need to know

Advance decisions to refuse treatment - what GPs need to know

A recent case has underlined the need for GPs to communicate a patient’s known wishes...

Law changed to allow physios and paramedics to administer vaccines during pandemic

Law changed to allow physios and paramedics to administer vaccines during pandemic

A wider range of healthcare workers will be allowed to administer flu and potential...

Medicines shortages drive up GP workload as prescribing costs surge £158m

Medicines shortages drive up GP workload as prescribing costs surge £158m

Medicines shortages in England are continuing to drive up GP workload during the...

Arrhythmias - red flag symptoms

Arrhythmias - red flag symptoms

Dr Pipin Singh provides an overview of red flag symptoms in patients with arrhythmias.

How have GP practices fared under CQC inspections?

How have GP practices fared under CQC inspections?

The latest annual report from the CQC sets out ratings for all of the sectors it...

CQC flags concern over GP access despite 2m face-to-face appointments last week

CQC flags concern over GP access despite 2m face-to-face appointments last week

The CQC plans to 'follow up' concerns about access to face-to-face GP services, warning...