Documents to download

On 8 September 2016, the House of Lords will debate the motion “that this House takes note of the impact of the Health and Social Care Act 2012 on the current performance of the National Health Service and its future sustainability”.

The Health and Social Care Act 2012 received royal assent on 27 March 2012, with many of its provisions coming into force on 1 April 2013. It introduced significant structural changes to the NHS, including the establishment of clinical commissioning groups, replacing the previous primary care trusts.

Since the passage of the Act, the NHS has continued to see increasing demand in a challenging economic environment. NHS Improvement—a body established on 1 April 2016 by bringing together existing organisations including Monitor and the NHS Trust Development Authority—has stated that:

Sustained operational and financial challenges continued to affect adversely the performance of the NHS provider sector in 2015/16. Providers faced record high demand and increased cost pressures. Throughout the year, providers worked hard to improve services for patients, reduce costs and maximise resources. Despite these efforts, the sector as a whole continued to underperform against a number of national healthcare standards, and the year-end deficit was almost three times larger than position reported in 2014/15.

On 16 December 2015, the Government established the Sustainability and Transformation Fund (STF), providing £1.8 billion to “help challenged hospitals to achieve financial balance while focusing on changing the way they provide high quality care for patients”.

Documents to download

Related posts

  • Medicinal and agrochemical products can be granted a Supplementary Protection Certificate, an intellectual property right associated with patents, to provide up to five years of additional rights and protections once their patents have expired. In order to apply for an SPC, a product must receive approval to be sold on the UK market. Under the Northern Ireland/Ireland Protocol, products to be sold in Northern Ireland must obtain approval under EU law, whilst products to be sold in the rest of the UK will obtain approval under UK law. Currently, this marketing authorisation is only given on a UK-wide basis. This regulation amends the market authorisation process to enable authorisations to be granted for the Northern Ireland market only and for the Great Britain market only.

  • There is currently a system for mutual recognition of health and social care qualifications within and between European Economic Area states and Switzerland. The UK has passed legislation amending its provisions in this area to take account of its exit from the EU. In recent agreements with Switzerland and the European Free Trade Area states, the UK committed to conditions for these countries which go further than the legislation that has already been passed. The European Qualifications (Health and Social Care Professions) (EFTA States) (Amendment etc.) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 would implement these commitments.

  • The UK will no longer be part of EU reciprocal and cross-border healthcare arrangements after the transition period ends on 31 December 2020. However, some groups of people will retain rights after this under the terms of the withdrawal agreement. The Government made regulations in 2019 to deal with reciprocal and cross-border healthcare if the UK left the EU with no ‘divorce’ deal. It is now planning to update these regulations to reflect the withdrawal agreement.