Headlines: January 10th, 2001

Local Government and the NHS have got together to present a single voice in the emerging debate over plans for local scrutiny of the NHS.In anticipation of the second reading of Health and Social Care Bill the NHS Confederation and the Local Government Association have welcomed the Government’s proposals for local authorities to be given powers to scrutinise local NHS services.

The two have launched a joint discussion paper on the issue of scrutiny. They agree that the proposals should lead to a more patient centred and locally accountable NHS.

The alliance is an attempt to aid the new arrangement becoming a constructive rather than adversarial process.

The two bodies make the case of flexibility of arrangements dependent on local circumstances.

The discussion document, ‘Scrutiny and the new NHS’, is available at www.nhsconfed.net  or www.lga.gov.uk