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Social Policy Review 25Analysis and debate in social policy, 2013$
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Gaby Ramia, Kevin Farnsworth, and Zoe Irving

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781447312741

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447312741.001.0001

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Doctors in the driving seat? Reforms in NHS primary care and commissioning

Doctors in the driving seat? Reforms in NHS primary care and commissioning

(p.47) Three Doctors in the driving seat? Reforms in NHS primary care and commissioning
Social Policy Review 25

Elke Heins

Policy Press

In Chapter Three, Elke Heins examines NHS reforms in relation to primary care and commissioning, principally through the government's Health and Social Care Act 2012. Taking effect in April 2013, the act reorganises the way that NHS services are commissioned. At a time when marketised ‘new public management’ experiments are being questioned by many governments around the developed world, the UK government is establishing a regulated market in which ‘any qualified provider’ from either the public or private sectors can compete for the right to be an NHS provider. Heins argues that this development needs to be understood in its historical context, with past marketisation measures having achieved at best ‘ambivalent’ outcomes. In the case of the 2012 Act, given growing budgetary pressures, doctors are likely to outsource their new-found ‘decision-making powers’, given to them in the market context, to private providers where possible.

Keywords:   NHS, Primary care, Commissioning, Health and Social Care Act 2012, Budgets

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