Niall Dickson: Health Foundation report reflects how even tougher times lie ahead

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Niall Dickson

Responding to the Health Foundation report 'A year of plenty? An analysis of NHS finances and consultant productivity', Niall Dickson, the chief executive of the NHS Confederation which represents health service organisations across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, said:

“The question of who provides the care is not the issue – what matters is the quality of that care and its value for money.

“The last couple of years have been tough but even harder times lie ahead. The limited additional extra funding in recent years was supposed to bring the system back into balance and change the way services are organised – the reality is that there is still a long way to go on both fronts.

“There is a real commitment in the system to transform the way services are run, but as this report shows all too clearly, attempting to do this while coping with unprecedented demand and the greatest period of austerity the NHS has ever experienced is going to be very difficult and change will take time.

“There is great care being given to millions of patients every day throughout the country and we should celebrate that. At the same time we need to be prepared for more difficult times – not only in hospitals, but in mental health and community services. And if we are to succeed in radical reform we need honesty and support from politicians of all parties as difficult decisions are made.”

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