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Scrap health bill say midwives

Thursday, 19th January 2012

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) is calling for the NHS Health and Social Care Bill to be scrapped. The RCM has consistently voiced its concerns about the Bill, with little response or movement on its key concerns from the Government.

The Bill, currently moving through the legislative process, has attracted vehement opposition throughout.

Commenting on the RCM decision, Cathy Warwick, chief executive of the Royal College of Midwives, said:  “This bill is a massively expensive distraction from the challenges that the NHS faces in trying to improve healthcare at a time of severe spending restraint.

“The Royal College of Midwives supports many of the Government’s aspirations for the NHS, such as clinically-led commissioning, greater engagement of service users in their care and more integrated services, but the fact of the matter is that these can all be achieved without the need for this divisive and costly bill.

“Independent analysts have calculated that implementing the provisions in the bill will cost the NHS an extra £2 billion to £3 billion on top of the £20 billion in efficiency savings the NHS has to find in the next four years.

“The Government has failed to present sufficient evidence that its proposals are necessary. They have failed to present evidence that the upheaval will result in an improvement in services to the people of England. And they have failed to answer the concerns of the people who fear for the future of the NHS under these plans.

“Breaking up what we have, embracing the private sector, and injecting full-blown competition and market forces is not what the NHS needs or what health professionals and patients want.

“We join the growing chorus of voices calling for the bill to be withdrawn, and the proposed reforms stopped in their entirety.”
For more information contact the RCM Press Office on 020 7312 3456, pressofficer@rcm.org.uk.

Notes to editors

The Royal College of Midwives is the voice of midwifery. We are the UK’s only trade union and professional organisation led by midwives for midwives. The vast majority of the midwifery profession are our members. The RCM promotes midwifery, quality maternity services and professional standards. We support and represent our members individually and collectively in all four UK countries.  We influence on behalf of our members and for the interests of the women and families for which they care.  For more information visit the RCM website at www.rcm.org.uk.