Campaigning group accuses health department of “obfuscating” over health bill

BMJ 2011; 343 doi: (Published 09 September 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;343:d5731
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. 1London

The campaigning group 38 Degrees has accused the Department of Health for England of politicising genuine concerns it raised about the new Health and Social Care Bill, calling the government’s response to its legal opinion “obfuscating” and “muddled.”

The group, which says it takes action on issues that matter to the public, commissioned two barristers to analyse the health bill and published their analysis at the end of August (BMJ 2011;343:d5525, doi:10.1136/bmj.d5525). The analysis said that the bill removes the obligation of the secretary of state for health to provide a national health service, instead handing over this responsibility to the new clinical commissioning groups. Stephen Cragg, a London barrister, said that this would effectively lead to “a fragmenting of a service that …

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