asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he has any plans to introduce legislation to establish a statutory national inspectorate to monitor health care provision; and if he will make a statement.
No. Our Department monitors the National Health Service in a whole range of ways, including approval of regional health authorities' plans and review of performance. In addition the Health Advisory Service, while not an inspectorate, operates independently to help maintain and improve patient care in services for mentally ill and elderly people. The national development team for mentally handicapped people serves a similar function.