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Confusion is widespread about the role and aim of clinical senates, conference hears

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.e3037 (Published 26 April 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e3037
  1. Matthew Limb
  1. 1London

The government has yet to explain clearly what “clinical senates” are for, how they will be funded, and what they will achieve, senior NHS figures told a conference.

Concerns were raised at a Westminster Health Forum seminar that the new bodies being set up in England could create another bureaucratic “talking shop” with little benefit.

David Stout, deputy chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said there had been “remarkable silence” from the Department of Health since clinical senates were first mooted.

The idea emerged in June 2011 from discussions of the NHS Future Forum, without having been mentioned in a government white paper or in the Health and Social Care Bill, he said. The forum was originally set up …

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