Failure to engage clinicians is putting STPs at risk, says think tank

BMJ 2016; 355 doi: (Published 14 November 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;355:i6090
  1. Gareth Iacobucci
  1. The BMJ

A failure to engage clinicians and the public is hindering the development of potentially controversial plans to reconfigure NHS services across England, a new analysis by the health think tank the King’s Fund has concluded.1

Proposals known as sustainability and transformation plans (STPs) have been drawn up in haste by representatives of the NHS and local authorities in 44 geographical areas of England, after NHS England set them a deadline of 21 October 2016 to submit blueprints for improving services and saving money over the next five years.

But the draft plans, which in some cases include cutting numbers of hospital beds and closing or downgrading local emergency departments, have provoked criticism from MPs, local authorities, and patients’ groups, which are concerned at the lack of transparency in the process.2

The King’s Fund, which …

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