The Government has announced changes to its Health Bill to address concerns raised by the public, medical professionals and the Liberal Democrats.
Liberal Democrats led the calls for changes after raising serious concerns at the party’s Spring Conference in March. Nick Clegg and others have worked hard in Government to make sure the concerns have been addressed.
In particular, Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats have ensured:
- There will be no special favours for the private sector. There will be a level playing field, not a race to the bottom
- The pace of change is slowed down to ensure changes are not rushed into and those taking on new responsibilities do so when they are ready.
- The changes will be evolution, not revolution
- The NHS is properly accountable, both nationally and locally
Commenting, Lynne Featherstone, MP for Hornsey and Wood Green said:
“I am proud of the way Liberal Democrats have listened and acted to address concerns about changes to the NHS.
“The Bill is now a whole lot better and will make sure decisions are taken in the best interests of patients.
“Liberal Democrats believe the NHS must always be universal, based on need and free at the point of use.
“We have ensured there will be no special favours for the private sector, proper accountability and that the changes are not rushed into before people are ready to take on new responsibilities.
“But this is no time for resting on our laurels. The NHS still faces huge challenges, with an ageing population and the rising costs of new drugs and technologies. I am confident the NHS is now in better shape to meet those challenges.”