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Debate Demanding Gov Publicise NHS Risk Register Due Today

Update: Motion was lost by 296 - 244

This morning, hours before the House of Commons is due to debate a Labour motion demanding that the Government publish it’s own evaluation of the risks to the NHS and patient care as result of the passing into law of the Health Care Services Bill; leaders of healthcare bodies such as the BMA, RCN and RCM amongst others have sent an open letter to the Government calling on them to publicise the NHS risk register.

The letter is as follows:

“In the light of the huge public and political concern about the government proposal to restructure the NHS, we find it astonishing that the government persists in their refusal to publish the risk register which would enable the public to understand the potential hazards that the health and social care bill presents.

This is the largest and most complex piece of legislation since the foundation of the NHS and it is incumbent on the government to share with the public the calculated risks.

We call on the government to publish the risk register forthwith.


Dr Peter Carter, chief executive and general secretary, Royal College of Nursing; Prof Lindsey Davies, president, Faculty of Public Health; Dr Clare Gerada, chair of council, Royal College of GPs; Ann Green, Allied Health Professions Federation; Phil Gray, chief executive, Chartered Society of Physiotherapists; Susan Hodgetts, chief executive, Institute of Healthcare Management; Dr Simon Lenton, chair, British Association for Community Child Health; Dr Hamish Meldrum, chair of council, British Medical Association; Prof Cathy Warwick, general secretary, Royal College of Midwives”

Labour has written to all LibDem MPs urging them to support their Commons early-day motion, EDM 86, during its 6 and a half hour debate scheduled for this afternoon.

Quoted in The Guardian this morning (22nd Feb), Labour Shadow Health minister Andy Burnham said:

"Whether people support the bill or not, there is surely an overriding public interest in properly informing the debate with all relevant information. People care passionately about the NHS and they have a right to know the full implications of the government's proposed reorganisation," said the shadow health secretary, Andy Burnham, who will open the opposition day debate for Labour after prime minister's questions.

"MPs and peers simply cannot be expected to give final approval to a far-reaching change of this magnitude to our country's best-loved institution without possession of all relevant information. Today the House of Commons should vote for the openness and transparency that this government once promised," Burnham added.

The Dept of Health's appeal against the information commissioner's original ruling is due to be heard on 5th and 6th March.

Souce: The Guardian

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