Patient voice may be lost in NHS reforms14 March 2011
Patients will not have more say in the design of health services under the government's NHS reforms, the right-wing think tank Reform has warned.
Reform backs DoH plans to reorganise the NHS. But it says the proposals neither provide accountability to patients nor dismantle central regulation.
Reorganising the commissioning structure would leave responsibility divided between consortia, local authorities and the NHS Commissioning Board, according to Reform's report.
'The Health Bill gives the NHS Commissioning Board significant powers over consortia,' the report says. 'But it also gives the secretary of state power to direct the Board not only in what it does but in how it does it. Consequently accountability runs to the centre.'
Reform is also concerned about how well NHS workers understand the changes.