Andrew Lansley hits back over NHS bill Comments



BBC Online. News, UK, Politics. 10th Feb 2012. Andrew Lansley hits back over NHS bill. (Accessed on 11th Feb 2012)

606. weemo 10th February 2012 - 20:09

If this government carries on and passes this bill into law it will signal the start of a century long period of Labour party government in this country. We will never ever forgive the Conservative party or their coalition partners for destroying OUR NHS

489. hearts18 10th February 2012 - 18:12

I am a nurse & have worked in the NHS for over 30 years,these proposed changes will destroy the service we have. For those who knock it-when it's gone, you will realise too late what has been lost. This bill allows private companies to make money out of missery.

Private healthcare: hip replacement=nice food, cake, no physiotherapy/aftercare. NHS: Physio/occupational therapy, planned aftercare,no cake.

381. Lizzie 10th February 2012 - 16:28

I am currently training to be a doctor and am terrified of the 'new' NHS into which I'll enter in a year's time. No healthcare professional enters their career because they want to deal in finance and politics.

I quote the words that Bevan spoke in the 40s: "No society can legitimately call itself civilised if a person is denied healthcare due to lack of means".

Patients not profits.

349. doctoreff 10th February 2012 - 15:58

I'm a GP. I do not want to control any budgets and I do not want to commission services. I want to see and treat patients and so do all the GPs I know. These changes will be a national disaster.

Private companies have to satisfy their share-holders, not patients.

Many of us most experienced GPs will retire rather than work with these new proposals.

52. cricket_lover15 10th February 2012 - 10:58

As a doctor, my main concern about the NHS reform bills is the amount of responsibility given to GPs who don’t have the skills + experience to manage commissioning. They were never trained to be managers but local community drs.

If the proposed NHS system fails, all fingers will point directly at GPs + no one else- as the government is tired of being blamed for NHS failings + passing the buck

3. PhilHants 10th February 2012 - 10:20

If the "grassroots ConservativeHome website" is calling for major changes to the bill then it really must be flawed! The NHS, with all its faults, is a fundamental British Institution. We pay less for our services than a lot of other countries (as a percentage of GDP) and yet keep complaining that the NHS doesn't deliver. The NHS is not perfect but the proposed changes are not a solution.

86. Big John the Red 10th February 2012 - 11:26

This is just another nail in the coffin of the post-war consensus. Unfortunately our parents and grandparents who can actually remember life without an NHS are now sadly thin on the ground.

They post-war declared and voted that there would be no return to the old ways, no return of the “Hearts of Oak” man. Lest we forget, I think we have.

780. Sarah 10th February 2012 - 23:26

I am a GP and already I've had some of my hospital referrals diverted by commissioning managers to a cheaper and inferior private provider against the clear wishes of the patients , who wanted to see a consultant at our good local hospital.

774. mervhob 10th February 2012 - 23:18

762 Petissa

Yes, after a heart attack in 2007 - and I have nothing but praise for care and professionalism of the NHS clinical staff at all levels. Hard working, understaffed, but really dedicated to their tasks.

So do away with 'targets', make the internal administrative systems work properly - make managers bring more to their daily tasks than their opinions, spin and mantras, it will work!

770. MKJ 10th February 2012 - 23:10

@749 Minerve, I am a GP. I drive an S reg Toyota. One of my partners has a Merc...It's at least 5 years old. I know a few GPs who are well off, but I suspect that there are very, very few who could afford the life-style you describe.

I would love to invite you to my practice to work alongside me or my nursing staff and see what working in the NHS means to us and to the patients who trust us.

762. Petisa 10th February 2012 - 23:00

Could somebody commenting here raise their hand and say they were saved by the NHS? I was, from a life-threatening illness. The dedication, professionalism and unselfishness of he NHS doctors and nurses was staggering.

And they do it day-in-day-out. Can you?

756. abitharsh 10th February 2012 - 22:53

It's the joining up of services that worries me most, the more segmented/clustered the services the harder it is to have continuity of quality care, I see it first hand. Does anyone really want services recommissioned every 2-3 years based on reduced cost (-quality/+profit)? How about opening the GOVT up to COMPETITION with Proportional Representation? Bet you wouldn't like that Mr Cameron.

754. David Cowlishaw 10th February 2012 - 22:53

In the NHS that I recognise, GP diagnose and refer on to hospitals as well as doing a great deal of work at the sharp end. They should not be expected to be, nor should they be paid to be accountants; let them practice medicine.

746. mervhob 10th February 2012 - 22:43

Sarah444 The Tories handed much of elderly care to the private sector in the late 1980s. This proved an utter disaster leading to bed blocking in NHS hospitals.

A friend whose wife has a severe Parkinsonian condition, and requires three care visits a day, is paying £3000 a month for that service to a private care company. Is that what you want - profit from human misery?

743. Cedders 10th February 2012 - 22:42

I don't think the Government are so foolish as to stake its popularity on something that it may paint as minor reforms, but which really would damage health and the NHS. So either Lansley drops the Bill, or the Government should drop Lansley.

BTW the NHS in fact still costs far less per capita than healthcare in the US and almost everywhere else in the developed world.

742. Petisa 10th February 2012 - 22:39

Oh! And by the way. Outsourcing sounds great. It means that whoever is signing and fulfilling the contract is making a very healthy profit - paid for by tax payers who get short changed in their care....

I wish, oh I wish all the money making people would dedicate themselves to doing just that... outside the NHS!!!!

736. MKJ 10th February 2012 - 22:30

re the NHS reforms. Yes, GPs are going along with them because we feel we have no choice. The last several years, starting under the Labour government, have seen an explosion in the amount of paper work. We no longer have time to "care" the way we want to for our elderly and frail and vulnerable.

Instead we have to fill in forms and meet meaningless targets.

If I could retire tomorrow I would!

735. cantonboycardiff 10th February 2012 - 22:30

Cameron had to use the NHS for his very sick child but he also could afford 24 hour private nursing care two of them seven days a week no private insurance company could or would provide care for his son yet he is willing others with very ill children to in future to probably rely on charitable funded care ..

725. notinthemanifesto 10th February 2012 - 22:21

Adam, Cameron has to use the NHS. His son's needs were too complex for the private sector to take on. Under the new system the very ill will be uninsurable. Thus do hundreds of thousands of Americans face bankruptcy every year due to uninsured illness.

730. Steve 10th February 2012 - 22:25

This really makes me angry. Mr Cameron stated at question time it was to eliminate numerous levels of bereaucracyy. TOTAL RUBBISH. My wife worked for the NHS at a small cottage hospital until October last year.

This hospital is now owned by private enterprise, my wife no longer works for the NHS, it is a private hospital.

EVERYBODY WAKE UP, the government is privatising the NHS.

722. Sarah 10th February 2012 - 22:20

The health service will be ruined by this bill. The NHS will become fragmented and disorganised, good local hospitals will close. Choice will be markedly reduced.

I work as a GP and already the commissioning group managers are trying to force us not to refer to our good local NHS hospitals but instead to refer to cheaper and nastier private companies providing an inferior service.

721. Minerve 10th February 2012 - 22:20


The government's first major point in the reforms was to erase the law that held the government, via the minister for health, responsible for delivering health services to the public.

If that doesn't frighten you, then I sincerely hope you acquire a deep purse.

716. bertsprockett 10th February 2012 - 22:16

Mr. Lansley is introducing these 'reforms' so that private health providers can get their hands on NHS money. You'll find, if these changes go through, your GP's allocation will run out and you will be paying £9-12K for a hip replacement with no essential aftercare.

Will Mr. Lansley succeed in junking the NHS?

saving up the money now.

715. cantonboycardiff 10th February 2012 - 22:13

@710 Adam Within two years large parts of the NHS in England will be in the Hands of the greed orientated Us based health care business and billions a year will disappear into their coffers to pay share holders,directors and tory minister board members.because the markets know best and need to reward failure with bonus after bonus.

Money that should be spent on patients care.

701. wabn1 10th February 2012 - 21:48

I'm an American who has worked in the NHS for the past 20 years. So many British people seem unaware of how superb the NHS is, staffed with committed, dedicated people.

Allow this bill through and you will miss it when it's gone, I assure you.

675. notinthemanifesto 10th February 2012 - 21:24

Coalition are saying the fact that GPs are involved in GP commissioning shows they are enthusiastic about the reforms.

Not so.

I am a GP and I know. We get QOF points for getting involved, going to meetings, doing the audits and showing we are managing our referrals and medicines more cost-effectively. Its alot of work, we wouldn't be choosing to take this on without being paid.

661. Dr Bob Matthews 10th February 2012 - 21:11

The Tories just do not get it The S in NHS stands for service, it is a public service it is not a cash cow or method of making vast profits for private companies or friends of the government. The sooner this ragtag of a government realise that they mess with the NHS at their peril the better. The privatised utility companies are lasting example of what the NHS will be under the Tories.

627. Cruel_Irony 10th February 2012 - 20:27

The driving force behind all privatisations is about profit for the few. Hence the NHS privatisation isn't about delivery of improved health care.

We're dealing with Tory religion here, derived from Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman which cannot be questioned. The religion, simply: Unregulated free market is always right.

Right, only for maximising profits, little else. see railways, utilities !

616. POMPEYFAITH 10th February 2012 - 20:18

Doctoreff, rather than retire we need you to stay on and help us fight this health bill to the end. If we as patients and citizens do not have NHS employees on are side we stand no hope at all.

I had an haemorrhagic stoke in 1990 that nearly killed me and a minor heart attack in 2009 that needed stenting I was then quiet rightly proud of our health service and that for me remains so

612. Colin 10th February 2012 - 20:17

I am old enough to remember a Tory government under Margaret Thatcher -. she wanted to privatise the NHS and we were led to believe that private companies would fill the gap - now we know all they want to do is to cherry pick the profitable bits.

The last govt spent money on the NHS and improvements (such as shorter waiting times) showed. This lot only want to ruin the NHS.

Dont let them.

607. forgottenukcitizen 10th February 2012 - 20:10

590. LUFCAT Most people recognise that the NHS needs change.

The trouble is that the proposed bill looks like a lurch towards a US style system that only really serves to line the pockets of the insurance companies.

Having lived there, I don’t think i would want it here.

525. doctor_g 10th February 2012 - 18:48

"We trained hard, but it seemed that every time we were beginning to form into teams we would be reorganised. I was to learn later in life that we tend to meet any new situation by reorganisation; and a wonderful method it can be for creating the illusion of progress while producing confusion, inefficiency and demoralisation."

Caius Petronius, AD 66

514. Mysticalnubnub 10th February 2012 - 18:34

It's saddening that this is happening. Britain, back in the post war days of Attlee, was the pioneer of the NHS, and set an example for the rest of the world to follow.

Now this party that the majority of the population DIDN'T want in power is destroying this service, which is paid by the public, and for the public.

Conservative induced corporate greed. I fear this country will be like the USA.

510. davenomid 7 March, 2013

The proposed changes to the NHS are designed so that GPs will be made scapegoats when the government does not spend enough to provide decent services. There's no explanation of why having clinicians do commissioning will produce a more cost-effective service. That's what commiss7 March, 2013t to deliberately destroy the NHS.

468. singing doc 10th February 2012 - 17:55

I am also a GP.

This bill was not necessary. If PCTs were made to listen to clinicians, and they had been made to get Professional Executive Committees sign off, and the PECs had to be constituted by a number of GP representatives and hospital consultants with special committees to develop pathways we could have achieved the same result.

I am 53 and I would rather retire as well.

467. Bolloscznoski 10th February 2012 - 17:54

The reasoning behind the tories desire for greater privatisation in the health service is evident when you look at the American health "industry". 7 out of 10 of the top paid CEO's are from this sector. They are raking in vast profits.

They have no desire to improve health care for everyone - as was the remit of the NHS when created, but they do like the smell of the money.

459. Witchdoctor 10th February 2012 - 17:38

I am a GP. The NHS is not broken, yet Labour, now ConDem coalition implement change which they call reform.

The most recent comments from Professor McKee in today's BMJ [British Medical Journal] reinforce the view of nearly all health care professionals that the Health and Social Care Bill must be abandoned because it adds nothing to the excellent primary health care this country already has.

382. allan 10th February 2012 - 16:28

My son was born in 1981 with a very serious heart condition. In 1983 the Thatcher govt was letting babies die so they could cut costs and destroy the NHS, Families of seriously ill children petitioned and we went to Downing St but Thatcher refused to see us and we met Neil Kinnock instead.The Tories are vile and cannot be trusted with the NHS.

379. Rob 10th February 2012 - 16:28

Call me old-fashioned, but when I visit my GP I want his attention focused on my health, not a balance sheet. I want to be treated as a patient, not a customer. If I am ill I want my doctor to think about what he can do to make me well, not about how much it will cost.

I do agree that someone needs to keep an eye on the money, but I hope my GP went to medical school, not business school.

353. shurelll045 10th February 2012 - 16:00

I have just left BUPA because the premiums for my wife and myself have climbed to £390 per month for full cover. I am 66 and my wife is 59. That figure was subsidised by my pension provider and would have been appx £700 per month without the subsidy.

These are the sorts of figures you have to pay for private health care. I assume most commentators here will be happy to pay that amount.

348. wirral18 10th February 2012 - 15:57


Honestly i had no idea how much the right wing press had brain washed us all. My Nan received round the clock care on the NHS which allowed us to keep her in her own home so we would look after her in the evenings and weekends.

You just can't get this in other countries. NHS broken???!!!!! It's just a Tory lie to push through their own ideolical policies.

341. Ex Tory Voter 10th February 2012 - 15:51

"326.wirral18 I have been conned by Tory spin up until now!! The NHS is actually very good value for money and this is simply an ideological bill and not in anyway shaped for the benfit of the country."

Likewise. Until becoming a carer I also believed the NHS was broken. Now I use it regularly, I realise just how lucky we are to have it, and how good it is, warts and all. Hence my user name.

323. Mark 10th February 2012 - 15:37

The core idealogy of the Conservatives is to make as much money as possible and keep it. Now, taking aside all the nonsense they bandy about wanting to reform the NHS; this is nonsense on the whole.

Their objective is to begin driving a wedge into the NHS, to weaken the altruism that forms the basis for the NHS and then cream off profits but keep them, rather than serve the greater good of all.

298. js 10th February 2012 - 15:13

The health service would run much more efficiently (as would state education) if governments would stop meddling and let the professionals get on with their job without constant harassment.

I have heard doctors and consultants complain that just as they are beginning to cope with one system another government initiative comes along and upsets the applecart wasting huge amounts of money.

290. Therapne 10th February 2012 - 15:08

When my father was a young teenager he became ill with peritonitis. My grandparents had to go before a medical board and beg for funding so that he could have a life-saving operation to remove his appendix.

My father was one of the lucky ones - he lived, but others weren't so lucky and didn't. Is this REALLY what we want to go back to?

219. Dal 10th February 2012 - 13:53


Your wrong. I've a daughter in intensive care in Chelsea, and BUPA advised families to use the NHS as for the medical attention you recieve on the ward, and care of the nurses is second to none. I've been overwhelmed from the nurses and doctors and everyone there, we must keep the NHS as it is, it can be ropey, but its saved my daughter and many many more.

218. hubert huzzah 10th February 2012 - 13:52

The NHS is, on average, 25% the cost of private provision. The truth is that the NHS is good, cheap and offers value for money. Putting the word "reform" in front of a prejudice and implementing it as policy is dangerous nonsense.

Markets do not cure people, doctors do.

Next they will say the reform is to big to fail.

208. SgtPepper69 10th February 2012 - 13:39

It's clear to me, despite what happens to the NHS bill, that PCTs have been told to "get on with it". I work as a consultant surgeon in secondary care and am involved in clinical pathway groups; the PCT have already put a number of our services out for AQP (read private provider) without ANY input from clinicians.....fait accompl?

206. Who8allthepies 10th February 2012 - 13:38

The National Health Service is a unique bastion of British life that unfettered Tory greed must not be allowed to destroy. It exists for all, regardless of social standing, staffed by good people with concern for the wellbeing of their fellow human beings at their core.

To turn it into merely another profit-based company would fundamentally change our country, very much for the worse.

139. danensis 10th February 2012 - 12:27

David Kidd "outside the westminster media frenzy, there isn't a great deal of public interest here"

I suggest you attend my cancer services users' group, or the NCRI consumer liaison group, and you would find out jut how much public interest there is in this dsimantling of the NHS.

My father is 91, and remembers his mother having to choose between calling the doctor or feeding her family.

129. Ian 10th February 2012 - 12:11

If you have lived in a country that has no NHS you will know why it should be protected.

This is the number ONE issue today.

115. Parallel World 10th February 2012 - 11:58

I also want my doctor to make me better, without distractions, and I definitely don't want her to have to juggle the ethical question of whether I am more deserving of treatment than someone else

111. Loony Liberal - 10th February 2012 - 11:54

So, let me get this straight: The biggest top-down reorganisation proposals came to fruition after the general election in which the Tories campaigned not to reorganise the NHS.

Since then, the public, various health professionals and MPs have criticised the bill. Furthermore, GP's who stand to gain most aren't for it. Now Tory grassrooters stand against it.

It's criminal it hasn't been dropped.

110. camsw4 10th February 2012 - 11:52

@Ron: The NHS picks up a lot of the pieces of people's misery. We look after the sick, the intoxicated, and the needy. We have more expensive treatments, more litigation, and bigger demands of an aging population.

Give some credit to an organisation that rarely turns its back on people that walk through its doors. What makes you think this Bill will sort it out? Look at national rail!

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