Last updated:

Caring, supportive, collaborative: a future vision for the NHS

CSC report home hero

Doctors feel that they are increasingly expected to treat patients in an unsafe, unsupportive environment, contributing to a vicious cycle of low morale and poor rates of recruitment and retention. This can and must change.

Our report – Caring, supportive, collaborative: Doctors’ vision for change in the NHS – draws on the experience and expertise of BMA members across all branches of medical practice in the UK.

The report outlines where we believe we need to see change to ensure we safeguard patient care, make the NHS a great place to work and transform services for the better.

Doctors want to see:

  • an NHS that has a culture that is not rooted in blame, but supports and encourages learning and improvement, and equality of opportunity and reward, celebrating diversity so that everyone has the opportunity to succeed
  • an NHS that values its workforce as its strongest asset and supports doctors to be able to work safely, with the right mix of skills to meet the changing needs of patients
  • an NHS set up to encourage collaboration across traditional organisational divides, and where money is spent on delivering patient care – not squandered on transaction costs, fragmentation and bureaucracy.

Our report sets out specific recommendations aimed at government and NHS bodies.

Doctors have suggested, for example, that the way patient safety incidents are investigated should be radically changed to ensure that they can be seen as opportunities to improve future care rather than assigning blame.

In addition, in line with recent development in Scotland, new legislation is needed in England to create much clearer lines of accountability for safe staffing.

Investment in IT systems, that work across different parts of the NHS, is also needed to ensure that patient information can be securely shared between clinicians and with patients.

All these changes must be underpinned by sufficient resources to reverse the underfunding that has left the NHS in crisis over the last decade.

Working closely with partners across health and social care, the ideas contained in this report take us a step closer to building an NHS that is truly caring, supportive and collaborative. 

Read the report

Read the manifesto for change


Secondary care matters: shaping the future of safe, sustainable hospital-based healthcare in Scotland

This vision for secondary care covers hospital services and specialist services provided outside a hospital setting, such as community paediatrics and community psychiatry.

Developed by Scottish consultants, the report sets out a principles-based approach to shaping the future of safe, sustainable secondary care in Scotland. It contributes to the debate of how to transform the planning and delivery of secondary care services in Scotland, in a way that complements and integrates with services provided by colleagues in primary care.

Download the report


All member survey

On 3 May 2018, we launched a survey inviting members to help shape our future vision of the NHS. Just under 8,000 members completed this comprehensive survey.

See what our members said