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Private sector NHS involvement to grow

17 February 2011

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There will be more private sector involvement in the NHS after planned changes to the healthcare system are brought into effect, a survey of GP consortia suggests.

The radical reforms introduced by the coalition government will see strategic health authorities and primary care trusts axed and they will hand over responsibility for the commissioning of services for patients over to GPs.

GPs currently tasked with piloting the new system were questioned about their plans for seven areas of support. The survey by Pulse magazine revealed that six consortia only planned to use NHS managers across these areas while three out of 25 said they intend to outsource at least six out of seven to the private and voluntary sectors.

Half said they planned to enlist external support for human resources, 29% for accounting, 29% for data analysis and 29% for back-office support.

Overall, 11 were already talking to private or voluntary sector organisations about commissioning support, and seven have signed deals, the survey found.

Just over half of pathfinders said they were on course to break even under current commissioning systems, while a quarter were at risk of falling into deficit without some structural change and 20% said they would fall into severe deficit without major structural change.

Copyright © Press Association 2011


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