The Government is clear the reconfiguration of front line health services is a matter for the local National Health Service. Services should be tailored to meet the needs of the local population and proposals for substantial service change must meet the four tests of reconfiguration which are (i) support from general practitioner commissioners (ii) strengthened public and patient engagement (iii) clarity on the clinical evidence base (iv) support for patient choice.
It is right that reconfiguration is led by the local NHS, working closely with the support of commissioners including NHS England, the Trust Development Authority and Monitor.
We are advised that on 14 January 2016, the North West London Clinical Board considered the Independent Healthcare Commission report for North West London and its recommendations of the Shaping a Healthier Future programme.
We understand that the board welcomed this public scrutiny of the plans and agreed with the report that the programme should continue to engage with the public, local authorities, patient groups and other partners. The unanimous conclusion of the board’s clinicians was that the report offered no substantive evidence or credible alternative to consider that would lead to better outcomes for patients in North West London above the existing plans in place, which are designed by doctors based on significant clinical data, evidence and experience.