Royal College of Physicians EGM strongly opposed to Health Bill

Today’s Extraordinary General Meeting of the Royal College of Physicians saw heavy criticism of the foundering Health and Social Care Bill.
186 Fellows of the College attended the EGM, which passed the following motions.  Only the first is binding on the College, as the papers for the EGM were sent out before the other motions could be added to the agenda papers.
1.       80% voted in favour of the College surveying its membership about the Health and Social Care Bill; 16% voted against, with 4% abstaining.

2.       89% agreed that the Health and Social Care Bill will harm the health and healthcare of the population (8% voted against, 3% abstained)

3.       79% agreed that the College should publicly oppose the Health and Social Care Bill (18% voted against, 2% abstained)
At the EGM, consultant neurologist Dr David Nicholl announced the results of an informal online survey of members and fellows of the College. 

Over 92% of 878 fellows and members who responded to the survey said they believed the RCP should publicly call for the withdrawal of the Health and Social Care Bill.
Dr David Nicholl commented:

“I’m delighted at the result of today’s EGM. The College has made major efforts to improve this deeply flawed Bill, but the time has come to state publicly that overall the Bill will do damage to the NHS and the health of our patients.  College Officers now realise the strength of feeling among members and fellows.”

Dr David Cohen, Consultant Stroke Physician, London, added:

“Today’s EGM recognised the huge gap between the spin that Ministers have tried to give to the Bill and what the Bill actually says.  “The proposed “reforms” will actually deliver less care at a higher unit cost.  Asking  consultancy companies, that have to make a profit for shareholders, to commission healthcare and manage the chaos of contracts that the Bill would create is  going to cost far more than the current system, and waste enormous amounts of taxpayers’  money that should be used to improve the health of our patients..”-

ENDS – Notes to Editors      

Some of the speeches made at the EGM are available from or

Dr David Nicholl, Consultant neurologist, West Midlands, 07562 720142

Dr David Cohen, Consultant stroke physician, London 07774 900504

Ian Willmore (media)                07887 641344

Statement from Dr Richard Horton, Editor of The Lancet

Dr David Nicholl Guardian Comment is Free. “we did not arrive at this position quickly or lightly. But after scrutiny and debate, our conclusion is that the bill is incoherent, damaging to the NHS and beyond rescue.”

5 responses to “Royal College of Physicians EGM strongly opposed to Health Bill

  1. Good.
    At long last….

  2. Brilliant – RCP Edinburgh already polling its members, hoefully the government will sit up and take notice if they join the opposition…

  3. Outright opposition really seems to be growing fast now. it is just such a pity that this wasn’t manifest earlier on. However it is important to keep up the pressure, on MPs (specially Lib-dems), peers, ministers and friends.

    Perhaps as a last resort we should inundate Buck House with requests for HMQ to invoke the royal perogative and refuse her consent, on the grounds that there is no mandate……… (Yes crazy idea I know, but we have to explore everything.

  4. In response to Lindy (“we have to explore everything”) I think we need now also to put maximum pressure on MPs to ensure that the “Drop the Health Bill” e-petition, which has now been signed by some 162,000 people (The highest number ever for this type of e-petition). is actually going to be fully debated in the House of Commons. The House of Commons and the Government must be forced to sacrifice parliamentary time (which is in very short supply) as an additional means of showing them the costs of this Bill.

    It is also high time to start discussions to explore how any future Labour government or a Labour/Lib/Dem coalition government are going to undo the worst damage as soon as they are in power. Remember Labour’s abject failure in respect of rail privatisation. This situation should not be allowed to happen again.!

  5. Pingback: Doctors of Tomorrow Add Voices to Call to Drop the Bill « beyondclicktivism

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