Consultation launched on safeguards for third-party health services

Medical Government/ NHS related news

The Department of Health has launched a consultation that aims to ensure that any health services provided by third parties are protected in the same way as those operated by the NHS.

New proposals will see Health Special Administration procedures extended to include services provided by charities, social enterprises and independent providers, ensuring continuity of care should these bodies become insolvent.

Under the Health and Social Care Act, financial regulator Monitor will carry out fiscal stability checks of external organisations and can appoint an administrator to take control of the company as a last resort.

The consultation will run until January 4th 2013 and is designed to help ensure that patients will receive high-quality services upon which they can rely, regardless of their choice of provider.

Health minister Lord Howe said: "It is an important step to ensure that regardless of how services are provided, we always meet the needs of our patients."

Earlier this week, the government introduced emergency legislation to clarify a potentially problematic inconsistency in the application of the Mental Health Act 1983 among a handful of strategic health authorities.

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