Health and Care Bill – act now to protect our NHS

HEALTH AND CARE BILL PASSED: CAMPAIGNERS STILL NEED TO ACT

The deeply flawed Health and Care Bill was finally voted through by MPs and Lords, reaching Royal Assent on 28th April so will now become law. 

There is still an opportunity to influence how the law will be interpreted in practice through the local Constitutions which need to be adopted by each Integrated Care Board (ICB). 

These local constitutions are being developed behind closed doors, although some (not all) have been made publicly available for wider comment. The operation of the ICB may also involve issues beyond those specified in the constitution.

The Integrated Care Board chair is appointed by NHS England and approved by the Secretary of State. Boards are unlikely to take action unless there is pressure to do so from the health and care sector, local authorities, NHS staff and patients.

It will only be possible to affect the Constitution and functioning of the ICB if the health and care sector, local government, NHS staff and patients speak out, loud and clear.

KONP statement

The Health and Care Bill becomes an Act: why it matters to us all


THINGS YOU CAN DO

* Write to the Chair of your Integrated Care Board (ICB) to demand action on important issues arising from the Bill. See here for current list of ICS Chairs.

* Use this template letter as a guide and try to put the issues in your own words.

* See the list of KONP demands for ICSs

* You can use the letter to contact others in your area who are interested or involved in how the ICB will function. 

* Here are suggestions for people to contact locally.

* See also We Own It letter-writing campaign to ICB Chairs demanding that no private companies are involved in ICBs


KONP AND THE HEALTH AND CARE BILL

Keep Our NHS Public opposed the Health and Care Bill 2021, which has just been voted through by MPs and Lords. The bill, and the guidance and regulations that come with it, signpost further fragmentation of the NHS, greater privatisation and damage to services and the workforce.

The bill also provides the legal framework required to implement the 40 or so Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) covering England, which pose a threat not least by allowing the private sector an even bigger role than it has currently, a role we believe is far too much already.

The Bill does not address any of the problems facing the NHS or social care and will distract from efforts to rebuild the NHS while it is still dealing with the Covid pandemic.

Here we provide information and analysis about the Health and Care Bill, Integrated Care Systems (ICSs), including the government’s White Paper, and its implications. You can also find how to get involved in our campaign and a range of campaign materials.

ICSs continue to pose a huge threat to the NHS as a universal, comprehensive health service that is publicly accountable, publicly funded and publicly provided.

The Health and Care BIll

Campaign materials

Letters and briefing notes

Leaflets

Model motions
Oppose the Health and Care Bill 2021: Model motion for trades unions

Useful presentations/speeches

Background information

Parliamentary reading

Integrated Care Systems (ICSs)

While the public has been kept in the dark, the NHS in England has been fragmented into around 40 areas that are now being turned into semi-independent ICSs. The Health and Care Bill aims to make these legal.

ICSs integrate organisations: each ICS brings together NHS bodies (such as hospital trusts), local councils and others (potentially private companies) to take joint responsibility for delivering services within a fixed budget.

KONP strongly supports the integration of services where this improves patient care: many NHS staff already work hard to achieve this. But ICSs are first and foremost about making the organisations within an ICS work together in order to reduce patients’ use of NHS services and save money.

Campaign materials

Leaflets

Model motions about ICSs

Background information

NHSE papers

 

Sign the petition, protect the NHS

Keep Our NHS Public member and NHS GP Louise Irvine has launched a petition to scrap the NHS Health and Care Bill to protect the NHS. 

Head over to Change.org to find out why it is so important this Bill is stopped as soon as possible. 

Sign the petition

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