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Shaping Health PolicyCase Study Methods and Analysis$
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Mark Exworthy, Stephen Peckham, Martin Powell, and Alison Hann

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9781847427588

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847427588.001.0001

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Hospital policy in England and Wales: of what is the 1962 Hospital Plan a case?

Hospital policy in England and Wales: of what is the 1962 Hospital Plan a case?

(p.59) Four Hospital policy in England and Wales: of what is the 1962 Hospital Plan a case?
Shaping Health Policy

John Mohan

Policy Press

The Hospital Plan for England and Wales (Ministry of Health, 1962) was a ten-year programme of hospital construction and reconstruction involving 90 new and 134 substantially remodelled hospitals. It was simultaneously an attempt to modernise hospital stock, to save capital expenditure by imposing a degree of standardisation on hospital construction, to reduce revenue expenditure by cutting running costs and to redistribute resources on the basis of need. Nearly half a century on, how should we view the Hospital Plan? It has generally had a good press in both academic and nonacademic texts. The Hospital Plan exists — and existed — in name only, but there are multiple interpretations of what it symbolised; it is far more than a case of decision making. Some interpretations lead, using new evidence, to a revised verdict on the Plan's coherence and of the arguments advanced in previous case studies. New lenses will enable us to look at events in different ways and with the benefit of longer-term perspectives — as in the discussion of the Plan as an exemplar of modernity and modernisation.

Keywords:   NHS, health policy, hospital plan, hierarchical regionalism

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