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David Cameron listens to patient concerns

David Cameron met with people with diabetes yesterday (Thursday 19 May) to hear their concerns about how the new NHS reforms could affect diabetes care and services.The event was organised by 11 leading health charities, including Diabetes UK, as part of the Government’s listening exercise to gain feedback on the proposals in its new Health and Social Care Bill.Health Secretary, Andrew Lansley, and Health Minister, Paul Burstow, also met with 100 people with a variety of long term medical conditions, including diabetes, cancer and mental illness, to hear their concerns.

NHS proposals need to be strengthened

Earlier this year the Coalition Government introduced its Health and Social Care Bill to Parliament with proposals to radically change how NHS services are designed and delivered across the UK. These have been challenged by various charities, patient groups and healthcare professionals. Diabetes UK has been campaigning to ensure the proposals do not undermine the delivery of high quality diabetes care.

The Government has been holding a series of ‘listening exercises’ to gain feedback on the Health Bill and this coalition of charities hosted its own listening exercise in order to represent patients, health and social care service users, carers and their families.

Patients are key to delivering new NHS

David Cameron addressed the audience saying that “the status quo of sitting where we are is not really an option” and that the ‘natural break’ called by the Government to gain feedback from various groups will give the opportunity for ‘substantial changes’ to be made to the NHS reforms.He said “commissioning should involve both GPs and patients” and that “it’s the patients who are key to delivering the new NHS”.Feedback from the event will be used to create a report that will inform the NHS Future Forum, a panel of clinicians, voluntary sector representatives and other key figures within the health sector overseeing the NHS listening exercise for the Government. 

* Quotes sourced from Twitter feeds throughout the event.

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