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Public Consultations

Volume 448: debated on Thursday 6 July 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) which public consultation exercises have resulted in the closure of (a) beds, (b) services and (c) other NHS facilities in each of the last three years; (80729)

(2) how many public consultations the NHS carried out in each of the last 3 years; and what the outcome was in each case.

The information requested is not held centrally.

National health service organisations have a duty to involve and consult patients, the public and their representatives in the planning and development of, and any changes to, the operation of services. NHS bodies are also under a duty to consult overview and scrutiny committees on any plans to make substantial variation to NHS services. Those committees have the powers to refer any proposal to the Secretary of State if they believe the plans are not in the interests of the health service. Currently there are four referrals being considered by the Secretary of State.