Local authorities to veto GP commissioning plans under White Paper

Local authorities will be able to veto a GP consortium's commissioning plans under the health secretary's White Paper reforms.

Giving evidence to the Health Select Committee on Tuesday, Andrew Lansley (pictured) said local authorities will be responsible for agreeing with consortia what their GP commissioning strategy will look like.

But if local authorities do not agree with the proposed plans they can refer the case to the Independent Reconfiguration Panel (IRP), he said.

Mr Lansley added that the IRP can then refer on the case to the health secretary.

He said: ‘We are going to ally it [GP commissioning] to a strategic role for local authorities, which is not about meshing together health, public heath and social care… It is also about local authorities explicitly having a responsibility together with the consortia to agree what the health service commissioning strategy will look like.

‘Proactively, local authorities will be participants in creating a strategic assessment of need in their area and how the commission plan will meet it. They will have the ability where they object to what is proposed to intervene.’

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