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Meldrum : Bill on a better track

The Health Bill is ‘on a better track' as a result of the amendments according to the BMA chair, Dr Hamish Meldrum.

In his speech at the BMA annual conference in Cardiff yesterday, Dr Meldrum, said: ‘The BMA has lobbied, cajoled and argued and as a result we have the prospect – I emphasise prospect – of a significantly different bill and on a better track from the one that was originally proposed.'

Dr Meldrum added it was ‘unprecedented' for a government to change its headline legislation so significantly and at such a late stage in the process.

‘Ask yourselves, who, six months ago, really believed that we could get this far, change this much, achieve what we have achieved?

‘Who believed we could revise the prime role of Monitor from promoting competition to encouraging integration?

Who believed we could restore the ultimate responsibility of the Secretary of State for ensuring a comprehensive NHS?

Who believed we could move to a more inclusive form of commissioning?'