5. July 2012 14:39
The NHS will evolve into one of the best health services in the world after the Government’s controversial structural reforms, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley has claimed.
Mr Lansley made the claim after the first Secretary of State’s Annual Report revealed waiting times are the lowest levels on record, MRSA outbreaks have fallen by a quarter and savings totalled £5.8bn.
Speaking in the House of Commons the Health Secretary said the health service was beginning a “new chapter” in its 64-year history.
He said performance results meant the NHS was entering a “new era based on openness and transparency, focused on what matters most to patients, on health outcomes, on care quality, on safety and on positive experience of care.”
“For the first time Parliament, patients and the public will know exactly how the NHS is performing, locally, nationally and by way of international comparison – a new era where patients are more in control, where clinicians lead services and where outcomes are amongst the best in the world,” said Mr Lansley.
However, Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham was unimpressed with Mr Lansley’s predictions and accused him of needlessly reorganising the NHS. He said: “Just when the NHS needed stability to focus all of its energy on the money, what did you do? You pulled the rug from underneath it with a reorganisation that no one wanted and this Prime Minister promised would never happen.”
The Labour MP told the Health Secretary he had wasted “not just one but two lost years” as he “obsessed on structures and inflicted an ideological experiment on the NHS”. Mr Burnham also claimed the NHS reforms had “led to a loss of financial grip at local level in the NHS”.