'Don't privatise NHS' MP tells Prime Minister
CONTROVERSIAL new rules which open up the NHS to private companies should be ditched, Torbay's MP has told David Cameron.
Adrian Sanders called on the Prime Minister in the Commons to shelve the regulations amid concerns over health service privatisation.
The Lib Dem MP is among those worried it would lead to free market competition for services.
This was something opponents of the reforms said they were promised would not happen as the Health and Social Care Act made its way through Parliament last year.
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But Mr Cameron warned that scrapping the new rules could actually make the level of competition for services worse.
Tackling the PM in the Commons, Mr Sanders said: "Will you withdraw the National Health Service Regulations which seem to contradict assurances given in the Lords that this coalition government will not privatise our NHS?"
In response, Mr Cameron said: "I would urge you to look very closely at these regulations because I think what you will find is they are absolutely in line with the principles the last government put in place.
"The effect of withdrawing the regulations would actually mean you would have more competition in the NHS rather than managed competition, managed by Monitor.
"And so I think the effect of what you want could be the exact opposite of what you seek."
The Health and Social Care Act proved a deeply divisive legislation and sparked widespread opposition.
There were particular concerns from the Lib Dems over the role of the private sector and the creation of new markets within the NHS.