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NHS competition rules 'to be withdrawn'

NHS competition rules 'to be withdrawn'
27th February 2013

New regulations published by the government just two weeks ago in an effort to provide the NHS with greater competition from private health firms are to be withdrawn.

The Daily Telegraph reports Liberal Democrat health minister Norman Lamb has said: "We need to review this carefully."

When it was announced earlier this month, the new Health and Social Care Act was heavily criticised by medical groups, MPs and campaigners. The guidelines ordered the removal of "any restrictions" that are "not necessary" and prevent private and voluntary organisations competing for contracts to provide healthcare services funded by the taxpayer.

The act caused strong disagreement among the coalition government, with Lib Dem MPs in particular concerned by the increased role of the private sector.

However, the party's peers and MPs backed the new laws after assurances from leader Nick Clegg that they would be implemented "in the interests of patients and not profits".

It is thought the legislation will be reviewed by the House of Lords next month.

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