NHS reforms: What is the Reality of Clinician-Led Purchasing of Health Services?

Richard Meakin, MD

In 1948 the National Health Service was established as a tax funded health service available to all, free at the point of access regardless of the ability to pay. The reality in the second decade of the 21st century is that with the ageing population and the concomitant increasing burden of disease and social care needs, together with the development of advanced technological treatment modalities, the cost burden is increasing rapidly. In 2012 the UK government introduced reforms which were based on the premise that family physicians, because they were closer to their patient, would know what their patient health care needs were and would therefore be able to commission health care more efficiently. This would all take place within an economic environment where downward pressure on costs was the norm. Dr. Meakin describes the reforms and examines the reality of these reforms from the perspective of a practicing family physician in the UK.
Richard Meakin, MD
Clinical Senior Lecturer, Department of Primary Care & Population Health, University College London
Recorded November 4, 2014

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