Report says Labour's NHS changes 'lack cohesion'

Quality of care in the NHS has improved markedly since 1997, but gains may not be commensurate with investment and reforms have lacked cohesion, a report says.

The Nuffield Trust report, 'The quest for quality: refining the NHS reforms', points to dramatic falls in waiting times and 22,000 fewer heart disease deaths a year as major improvements.

But it says that despite heavy investment, death rates from cancer and heart disease remain higher than those in other developed countries, and care standards vary significantly across the country.

The report calls for a national strategy, dubbed the National Quality Programme, to set national goals and deliver an independent annual report on progress in key areas of healthcare.

Nick.bostock@haymarket.com

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