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Health Secretary admits reforms risk

Health Secretary admits reforms risk

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Health Secretary Andrew Lansley has admitted there is "risk" attached to his radical NHS reform plans, but believes change is essential to provide better standards for patients.

However there would be a "greater risk" if the health service was not revolutionised, Mr Lansley insisted.

Under the Health and Social Care Bill, the majority of the NHS budget will pass to GPs who will have responsibility for commissioning services for patients.

Primary care trusts (PCTs) and strategic health authorities, which commission services at the moment, will be scrapped.

Six health service unions - including the Royal College of Nursing and British Medical Association - dismissed the proposals as "potentially disastrous" earlier in January.

Speaking to BBC1's Andrew Marr Show, the Health Secretary said: "I didn't say there wasn't risk. Of course there's risk because there's change.

"But actually if we don't change, the greater risk is that these problems that we have at the moment that we have to deal with won't be solved."

The NHS budget would be increased by £10.7 billion over the next four years but spending alone was "not the answer", Mr Lansley said.

"We discovered under Labour spending money isn't the answer, we have to deliver the results for patients. We don't get the results we should compared with other European countries; if we did, we would save thousands of lives."

Copyright © Press Association 2011

Department of Health

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