On 6 July 2021, the Health and Care Bill was published, setting out key legislative proposals to reform the delivery and organisation of health services in England, to promote more joined-up services and to ensure more of a focus on improving health rather than simply providing health care services.
The purpose of the Bill is to establish a legislative framework that supports collaboration rather than competition and many of its proposals have been informed by the NHS’s recommendations. The Bill also contains new powers for the Secretary of State over the health and care system, and targeted changes to public health, social care, and quality and safety matters. The Bill will be debated in parliament throughout autumn and winter 2021 and is expected to be passed in time for changes to come into effect in April 2022. Any Bill relating to the NHS can attract controversy, and this one is no different. In a specially written feature, the King’s Fund attempt to respond to some of the most frequently asked questions circulating so far, responding to the Bill as it was first published, including “what will the new system look like?” Read Feature