Survey of GPs points to a health 'fast-track'
The practice of 'fast-tracking' patients of fund-holders into hospital beds and clinics is extensive and deliberate, says the Association of Community Health Councils of England and Wales in a report today. It has found 'strong evidence' of a two-tier hospital system.
One Midlands CHC obtained a hospital memorandum that listed priority patients as those who were clinically urgent, or belonged to GP fund-holders, or had waited for more than 11 months. One man in the South-east said he had been waiting 18 months for a knee operation while his son, with the same condition but with a fund-holding practice, was seen in eight weeks.
Brian Mawhinney, Minister for Health, said he viewed the findings with scepticism. 'I hope the association is not decrying the dramatic improvements in patient care delivered by GP fundholders,' he said. 'It is clearly right for hospitals with spare capacity to make services available. In all cases which have been brought to us with claims of a two-tier system we have discovered it is a case of extra services.'
Under the NHS reforms, GPs can elect to manage their own budgets entirely, paying hospitals and other providers of health care for the treatment each patient needs. These GPs negotiate their patient contracts with the hospitals. Many of these are advantageous.
Fund-holding and Access to Hospital Care; Association of Community Health Councils, 30 Drayton Park, London N5 1PB; pounds 3.
- 1 Autistic teenager beaten up by bullies makes them watch 20-minute video about autism
- 3 World learns of app that shows you who unfriended you on Facebook, app promptly crashes
- 4 Chris Moyles reportedly set to make radio comeback with new breakfast show on XFM
- 5 The Greece debt crisis explained in less than 100 words
Florida man sentenced to two-and-a-half years for having sex on the beach in front of a child
Autistic teenager beaten up by bullies makes them watch 20-minute video about autism
Man who was struck and killed by lightning in Brecon Beacons 'was carrying a selfie stick'
Greece debt crisis as it happened: EU chiefs at loggerheads hours before Alexis Tsipras’s last ditch deal proposals
Florida teacher sentenced to 22 years in prison for sexually abusing three pupils
More Britons believe that multiculturalism makes the country worse - not better, says poll
Osborne to cap family benefits at £23,000 – announced ahead of his post-election Budget
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
Sickness and disability benefits could be reduced by £30 a week as part of £12bn welfare cuts
£23000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Business Analyst is required ...
£16000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: To succeed, you will need to ha...
£8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join an award winni...
£7 - £9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: Are you outgoing? Do you want to work in...