Healthcare and the economy 2: going with the flow

Document type
Manning, Julia; Beer, Gail
Date of publication
1 May 2014
Health Services
Social welfare
Material type

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The public hear the future of the NHS frequently debated by politicians, commentators, economists. This paper identifies some of the themes of the current debate and looks beyond ‘the NHS must change’ mantra and rhetoric to actually consider how to change, what needs to be communicated to people about these themes, how potential solutions can ‘go with the flow’ of public behaviour and what are the consequent trade-offs that need to be understood. Above all, we need managed public debate to de-politicise the NHS and involve us all in decision making that will determine how best to ensure we have an NHS for the future. Recommendations include: 1) produce a National Financial Plan and work towards a National Service Guarantee; 2) promote stewardship and accountability; 3) be honest about what’s available and enable people to spend on themselves; 4) enable clarity on choice; 5)use technology to deliver choice; 6) develop ‘Payment by Results’ benefit for those who make positive behavioural choices; 7) initiate strategic review and development of National ‘Blue’ Specialised Hospitals; 8) initiate strategic review and development of Local ‘Red’ General Hospitals; and 9) encourage public involvement

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