Need to get competition right

The House of Commons Health Committee has published a report on public expenditure on health and social care. Amongst other issues, it discussed the Competiton Commission's prohibition of the merger of Bournemouth and Poole hospitals. The Committee recommends that the Government should examine the background to the Bournemouth and Poole proposal in order to ensure that unnecessary impediments to necessary change are removed. This blog supports this worthy aim but it is important to remember that the reason the Competition Commission blocked the merger was that the Trusts had failed to persuade the Commission advised by Monitor that the merger would produce improvements for patients. The Committee's report can be found here.

In order to improve and quicken the competition authorities' decision making process for foundation trust mergers Monitor has written to foundation trust and clinical commissioning group leaders inviting their reponses to Monitor's proposed new guidance on FT mergers. The deadline for responses is 28 February. David Bennett's letter can be found here.

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