The Academy monitored the developments of the Health and Social Care Bill as it passed through Parliament, including the reforms to education and training of the healthcare workforce.
The Health and Social Care Act 2012 set out reforms to the health and public health service in England that came into place in April 2013. The Act introduced, for the first time, a duty to promote research throughout all levels of the reformed NHS - from the Secretary of State to commissioners.
From publication of an initial white paper in 2010 unril the Act gained Royal Assent in March 2012, the Academy monitored developments as the Health and Social Care Bill passed through Parliament. We also responded to reforms to education and training of the healthcare workforce.
Health White Paper
The Government published a Health White Paper, 'Equity and excellence: liberating the NHS', in July 2010 and issued a number of consultations. One was on the national NHS Outcomes Framework that will hold the proposed NHS Commissioning Board to account for national health outcomes. The Academy responded in a letter from its President to the Secretary of State for Health that stressed the need to give due consideration to research when judging the success of the NHS.
Public health white paper
The Government published a White Paper in November 2010 ,outlining its plans for public health: 'Healthy lives, healthy people: Our strategy for public health in England'. The Academy responded to the associated consultation.
Prior to its publication, the Academy's President wrote to the Secretary of State for Health to emphasise the value of public health and the importance of consulting the evidence base when considering new public health policies and practices.
As part of the health reforms, in October 2010 the Government outlined proposals for a new information strategy to determine how information is accessed, collated, analysed and used in the NHS. The Academy responded to the associated consultation in January 2011.
The Government engaged in a listening exercise, carried out by the Future Forum, from April to May 2011, to contribute towards developing the Health and Social Care Bill. During the exercise, the Academy's President met with Professor Steve Field, who led the Future Forum. The Academy also contributed to a joint submission coordinated by the Association of Medical Research Charities.
The President was delighted to receive a letter from the Rt. Hon Andrew Lansley CBE MP to thank him and the Academy for the input into the discussions during the listening exercise.
The Health and Social Care Bill moved into the House of Lords in September 2011. The Academy, in collaboration with other medical research funders and supporters, prepared two briefings on: embedding research and innovation in the NHS (October 2011); and specific amendments tabled in the House (November 2011).
The Academy also supported a January 2012 letter from Peers to the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Lord Howe, seeking assurances regarding the research, innovation and workforce aspects of the Bill.