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Welfare Reform on the Web (June 2008): National Health Service - primary and community care

Chan's plans for market banish rumours of a commercial break

S. Gainsbury

Health Service Journal, May 8th 2008, p. 12-13

The Department of Health Commercial Director Channing Wheeler is continuing the work of creating a market for the provision of NHS services. The Department has produced guidance for primary care trusts (PCTs) on fair and transparent commissioning of services from a mix of private, voluntary and public providers. Strategic Health Authorities will also provide support to PCTs in service procurement at the regional level. A complaints procedure is also being set up for bodies which feel that the NHS has treated them unfairly.

Commissioning network plans to beat NICE drug appraisals

H. Crump

Health Service Journal, May 1st 2008, p. 4-5

A new public health network is to give primary care trusts (PCTs) advice on licensed drugs before the publication of official guidance by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. It intends to boost access to expertise on specific commissioning topics and provide quicker evidence-based appraisals of new services and treatments. Each participating PCT will take responsibility for producing advice on new drugs and treatments in specific areas.

End of postcode lottery could put PCTs in a spin

A. Moore

Health Service Journal, May 29th 2008, p. 12-13

This article introduces the work of the new Public Health Commissioning Network, which will pool primary care trusts' expertise to assess the cost-effectiveness of new drugs in advance of NICE guidance. PCTs have been asked to put forward areas of expertise where they would be happy to assess new drugs; their conclusions would be disseminated across all trusts, but the advice would not be binding.

GP clinics may soon offer early abortions after successful trial

R. Smith

Daily Telegraph, May 8th 2008, p.1

Research has shown that there are no medical reasons why early drug induced abortions should not be made widely available. Women could soon be offered early-stage abortions in health centres, GP clinics and family planning centres

(See also The Independent, May 8th 2008, p. 11)

Perfect union: why partnerships must seek local public opinion

E. Robinson

Health Service Journal, May 8th 2008, p. 16-17

In order to sustain continuous improvement in the health of the population, the NHS needs to expand its joint working and partnering activities with local authorities in spite of regular disruption due to organisational change. It must recognise local need as a higher priority than central government targets and keep decision makers close to the communities they serve.

Primary care development

I. Torjeson (editor)

Health Service Journal, May 29th 2008, supplement, 12p

Special supplement covers the latest developments in primary care, considering practice-based commissioning, improving access to routine general practice through extended hours, the introduction of polyclinics, and moving specialist services into the community, and public accountability of primary care trusts.

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