NHS needs 'bonfire of quangos' to survive funding cuts

A 'bonfire of the quangos' will be required if the health service is to survive the next decade of economic hardship, the NHS Alliance has said.

Dr Mike Dixon: patients should be educated about the cost of treatment
Dr Mike Dixon: patients should be educated about the cost of treatment

Patients should also be told the cost of their treatment to encourage responsible use of NHS resources, its chairman Dr Michael Dixon told Healthcare Republic.

An NHS Alliance report, Maintaining the Vision, makes six key recommendations for the NHS to survive and predicts funding will fall short of the population's health needs by up to 32% by 2017.

A review of all quangos and regulatory bodies should be held and any unnecessary or duplicated services should be scrapped, says the report.

Dr Dixon said many NHS bodies including the foundation trust regulator Monitor ‘duplicate other functions'. He questioned ‘all of them except NICE and the CQC'.

‘All you need is a commissioner, a regulator and a body to come up with new ideas about what is cost-effective and affordable,' he said.

Ahead of the NHS Alliance annual conference in Manchester this week, Dr Dixon said explaining the costs of services to patients could end ‘the idea of the NHS as a soup kitchen'.

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