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Quackometer has an interesting take on this: NHS “Any Qualified Provider” Initiative is a Bonanza for Quacks
Government uses remarkable claims from the Wound Healing Clinic that are just not credible
....What is noticeable is that in the first phase many of these services will be for the sort of long term and difficult to treat problems that quacks like to prey on, such as back pain, leg ulcers, counselling and wound healing......
....If I was a chiropractor or homeopath, I would see this week’s announcement as the start of a gold rush for me. Happy days......
The Department of Health (DH) has asked PCT clusters and fledgling health and wellbeing boards to consult with patients about expanding the choice of provider for “three or more community or mental health services”.
In a letter to health professionals and local authorities DH managing director for commissioning Barbara Hakin said that consultations should be complete by the end of September with proposals for particular community services outlined one month later.
DH said the chosen service areas should be opened up by September next year.
Among the areas it suggested would be particularly appropriate were back and neck-pain services; hearing services; home diagnostic tests; continence services; wheelchair services for children; podiatry services; leg-ulcer and wound-healing services; and primary care psychological therapies.
The Worcester News are reporting: Competition in NHS is good, say bosses
Local NHS leaders have suggested podiatry services - treatments for feet - and the aim is to give patients the extra choice by next September.
Because of the tight time frame set by Government, NHS Worcestershire has not had time to consult widely with patients on which service to adopt for the pilot although GPs and others have suggested podiatry.
Simon Hairsnape, the West Mercia Cluster managing director for Worcestershire, said the availability of new providers should not make a difference to clinical care or price but around quality.
He said: “The expectation is that the quality difference will be around customer service, it will be around some of the softer things the NHS may not have done as well as it could.”