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BMA briefing: NHS Sustainability and Transformation Plans

The BMA briefed MPs ahead of an opposition day debate in the House of Commons on NHS Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs). Our briefing was referred to by the Shadow Secretary of State and Paula Sheriff MP (Lab, Dewsbury) who is a member of the Health Select Committee.

While the BMA believes that STPs potentially offer an opportunity to develop health policies more suited to local need, we do have concerns that their creation could exacerbate the funding crisis in the NHS or be used as a way to reduce money available to the NHS.

We also consider that for STPs to be successful it is crucial that there is sufficient public awareness and that they have the support of patients and doctors. The BMA is therefore calling for all plans to be made public and for local clinicians to be fully consulted and involved in any planned changes.

 

Key points

  • Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) potentially offer an opportunity to develop health policies more suited to local need. The BMA supports their aim to integrate services across health and social care and create a long term strategic plan for NHS services locally.

     

  • However, these plans must not exacerbate the funding crisis in the NHS or be used as a way to reduce money available to the NHS. It is important that STPs do not result in health funding being used to prop up depleted social care budgets rather than focussing on the health needs of the local population.

     

  • If NHS funding levels are insufficient, the government must look at developing a new funding settlement for health and social care services.

     

  • For STPs to be successful it is crucial that there is sufficient public awareness and that they have the support of patients and doctors. The BMA is therefore calling for all plans to be made public and for local clinicians to be fully consulted and involved in any planned changes.

     

  • There is currently no duty on STP leaders to consult with stakeholders, as exists for Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs). The BMA believes that a good governance structure must be developed to ensure proper accountability.

 

Download the BMA briefing

NHS Sustainability and Transformation Plans

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Find out more

For further information on this briefing, please contact David Knowles, Senior Public Affairs Office:

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