Strategic Health Authority consultation is meaningless
Transitional arrangements for Strategic Health Authorities (SHAs) have been issued by the Department of Health (1), midway through the consultation exercise on how the SHAs will be structured, suggesting that the consultation is simply a tick box exercise and that decisions on how the NHS will be structured have already been made. This guidance follows shortly after findings from the Health Select Committee that the 24th restructuring of the NHS is "insufficient and flawed" and "clumsy and cavalier" (2).
Green Party Health Spokesperson Stuart Jeffery said: "The publication of the transitional arrangements demonstrates that the government has no intention of listening to people's views and they obviously see the consultation as a necessary evil to be ignored. This consultation is being conducted by every SHA in England and will be costing a great deal of money, a commodity that the NHS is very short of."
He continued: "The government is, once again, dodging the real problems facing the NHS, such as chronic under funding and poor public health, by putting their efforts into a pointless restructuring. The restructuring will set the NHS back 18 months and destroy the morale of staff, providing the government with a scapegoat for its future failings."