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Petition Revoke the Health and Social Care Act 2012 and renationalise the NHS

Restore the responsibility of the Secretary of State to provide a comprehensive, integrated, publicly owned NHS free at the point of need.

More details

The development of the NHS with the principle of free health care for all, has been the single most important development in modern politics. There are concerns this is being undermined by underfunding and the outsourcing of the provision of some health care services to private companies. This could result in a two tier system of healthcare where people receive different medical care.

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Government responded

This response was given on 23 June 2020

The Government is committed to a publicly funded National Health Service, free-at the point of use. It is, and remains, public owned.

Read the response in full

We are considering legislative change to support the NHS and will bring forward proposals shortly.

The Government is, and always will be, steadfastly committed to a publicly funded NHS, free at the point of use. We are fully supporting the NHS as it faces unprecedented challenges due to the Coronavirus pandemic. We fully support the NHS being a comprehensive, integrated and high-quality service for all. The Government therefore dispute the premise of the petition, as the NHS has not been privatised, and have no plans to revoke the Health and Social Care Act 2012.

Within the framework above, the independent sector has played a key role in delivering high quality care for NHS patients, both before and throughout the coronavirus pandemic, and the Government is clear that patients should always be able to access the best possible treatments based on quality of care and value for money, not the type of provider they receive this care from. Therefore, there are no plans to remove the role the independent sector plays in provision of NHS-funded healthcare services.

While the NHS is currently focused on the emergency response to Coronavirus, in the medium term the Government is committed to helping the NHS continue to transform to meet the changing needs of our population. To do this, in January 2019, the NHS published its fully costed Long Term Plan (LTP), setting out how it would transform services and ensure the NHS continues to deliver a world-class service fit for the 21st Century. Delivering the LTP is a top priority for this Government, and to support this, we will provide the NHS with an extra £33.9bn per year, by 2023/24 - the largest, longest financial settlement in the history of the NHS.

The LTP sets out the NHS’ ambitions to provide more timely, joined-up care out of hospital, reduce pressures on urgent and emergency care, and deliver the fastest expansion in mental health services in the NHS’s history. The Plan will ensure that every baby will have the best start to life by improving maternity care, and we will improve outcomes for all major diseases through better prevention, detection, treatment and recovery.

To support integration strategically, from April 2021 all areas of England will be covered by Integrated Care Systems, allowing local NHS organisations to work alongside local government and other partners more closely than ever before, to plan and improve care for their populations.

The NHS has also published a set of recommendations for legislative changes, that would enable the NHS to go faster and further in realising the ambitions set out in the LTP. These recommendations include targeted amendments to the Health and Social Care Act 2012. These amendments will cut bureaucracy and improve collaboration across the health service. We welcome the NHS’s leadership of this work, and all the input from people across the health and care system. The Government is considering the NHS’s recommendations thoroughly and will bring forward detailed proposals shortly.

Department of Health and Social Care

This is a revised response. The Petitions Committee requested a response which more directly addressed the request of the petition. You can find the original response towards the bottom of the petition page (https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/300019)

At 100,000 signatures...

At 100,000 signatures, this petition will be considered for debate in Parliament

Other parliamentary business

MPs reports on integrated care and legislative proposals for the NHS

In June 2018 a group of MPs called the Health and Social Care Committee held an inquiry into integrated care. The inquiry focused on the then recent debates about the new forms of integrated care emerging in the NHS.

The MPs looked at the extent to which these care structures would improve health and care services for patients. The inquiry also looked at proposals for legislative reform.

You can view the Committee’s report on Integrated Care:

https://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/health-committee/inquiries/parliament-2017/inquiry4/

The integrated care inquiry was followed by an inquiry into proposals to implement the NHS long-term plan. You can read the full report on proposals for legislative change:

https://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/health-and-social-care-committee/inquiries/parliament-2017/nhs-legislation-inquiry-17-19/

These inquiries were conducted within the last Parliament, but the current Health and Social Care Committee has launched inquiries into social care and delivering core NHS and care services. You can find out about the Committee’s current work:

https://committees.parliament.uk/committee/81/health-and-social-care-committee

What is the Health and Social Care Committee?

The Health and Social Care Committee looks at and questions the Government about matters relating to public health and social care. It's a cross-party committee of MPs and is independent of the Government.

You can find out more about the Health and Social Care Committee on their website:
https://committees.parliament.uk/committee/81/health-and-social-care-committee/

You can follow the Health and Social Care Committee on Twitter: @CommonsHealth

The Health and Social Care Committee is a ‘select committee’. Find out how Select Committees work:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_2RDuDs44c

Further Information

You may also be interested to know that because of the large number of petitions that have been started in relation to coronavirus, the Petitions Committee has been questioning the Government about its response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Find out more: https://committees.parliament.uk/work/192/the-governments-response-to-coronavirus/

You can read impartial analysis of the Government response to coronavirus and policy developments here: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/coronavirus/

Original government response

The Government is committed to a publicly funded National Health Service, free-at the point of use. We are considering legislative change to support the NHS and will bring forward proposals shortly.

The Government is, and always will be, steadfastly committed to a publicly funded NHS, free at the point of use, and is fully supporting the NHS as it faces unprecedented challenges due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

We are clear that patients should always be able to access the best possible treatments based on quality of care and value for money, not the type of provider they receive this care from.

Beyond the emergency response, the Government is also committed to helping the NHS continue to transform to meet the changing needs of our population. To do this, in January 2019, the NHS published a fully costed Long Term Plan (LTP), setting out how it would transform services and ensure the NHS continues to deliver a world-class service fit for the 21st Century. Delivering the LTP is a top priority for this Government, and to support this, we will provide the NHS with an extra £33.9bn per year, by 2023/24 - the largest, longest financial settlement in the history of the NHS.

The Long Term Plan sets out the NHS’ ambitions to provide more timely, joined-up care out of hospital, reduce pressures on urgent and emergency care, and deliver the fastest expansion in mental health services in the NHS’s history. The Plan will ensure that every baby will have the best start to life by improving maternity care, and we will improve outcomes for all major diseases through better prevention, detection, treatment and recovery.

To support integration strategically, from April 2021 all areas of England will be covered by Integrated Care Systems, allowing local NHS organisations to work alongside local government and other partners more closely than ever before, to plan and improve care for their populations.

The NHS has also published a set of recommendations for legislative changes that would enable the NHS to go faster and further in realising the ambitions set out in the Long Term Plan. These recommendations will cut bureaucracy and improve collaboration across the health service. We welcome the NHS’s leadership of this work, and all the input from people across the health and care system and the Government is committed to supporting the implementation of the NHS Long Term Plan.

The Government is considering the NHS’s recommendations thoroughly and will bring forward detailed proposals shortly.

Department of Health and Social Care

This response was given on 11 May 2020. The Petitions Committee then requested a revised response, that more directly addressed the request of the petition.

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