The BMA is calling on political parties to pledge to support doctors and end large-scale NHS reorganisations in its new manifesto, being launched in the run up to the 2015 general election.
The BMA sets four areas which political parties should make a priority for their election campaigns: working in partnership with doctors to ensure a sustainable NHS, supporting the medical workforce, improving the health of the public, and assuring the quality and safety of patient care.
This includes taking ‘decisive’ action on the ‘considerable harm’ caused by public health and lifestyle issues, like alcohol, smoking, and nutrition and to create an open culture in the NHS where doctors can address and identify clinical failings without punitive reprisals.
BMA chairman Dr Mark Porter will take the manifesto to the party conferences, which begin this weekend, so the opportunity to make these ‘urgently needed’ changes is not missed.
Dr Porter writes: ‘Our manifesto is about solutions. It offers four steps, based on the daily, frontline experience of doctors. We believe they are what a new government needs to do to create a healthier nation.’
He added: ‘Elections – and governments – come and go. While a general election provides the opportunity to highlight the changes we urgently need, our daily focus, as doctors, is on our patients and their care.’