Nick Beale Wrote:
ssharma Wrote:It also says this,
"If a local authority has concerns about a significnant proposed closure of local services, for example and A&E department, it will have the right to challenge health organisations, and refer the case to the Independent Reconfigutation Panel. The Panel would then provide advice to the Secretary of State for Health"
How does this square with our health scrutiny powers??? Another one for CfPS and regional scrutiny networks to take up?
Isn't that the same right we already have? The only difference (possibly just a drafting error) is that we refer to the Secretary of State rather than directly to the IRP. Our Health OSC did this only recently, we referred a proposal to the the SoS and he asked the IRP's advice.
This right currently exits with OSC and not the LA - it would be helpful to understand whether they mean LA OSCs or the council. Sunita
It would be helpful but I doubt that there's much detail behind the coalition programme yet - they've only had 10 days to write the headlines.
The OSC has the power to go direct to the Secretary of State, without reference to Cabinet or Council. However the NHS has its wider S.11 duty of public involvement and that can (should?) entail consulting the authority as a whole on a substantial development or variation in service. So we've always understood that there might be both an OSC and a Cabinet response to something, and what is to stop the Cabinet writing to the SoS if they're sufficiently concerned?
Incidentally, the IRP don't just handle formal referrals. From their website: "Anyone involved with issues relating to changes to health services in their area can ask us for free informal advice. NHS organisations and local authority overview and scrutiny committees in particular may benefit. "