That BMA meeting in a nutshell

The BMA’s debate is plotted out in detail here on the Pulse blow-by-blow blog from their Special Representative Meeting if you want to read it. But in a nutshell:

  • BMA Chairman Hamish Meldrum survives the vote of no confidence in him (that calling the meeting implied)
  • Doctors voted overwhelmingly for more power and money (i.e. in favour of GP led Commissioning)
  • Other (salaried) GPs complained they wanted to be in the Consortia but their colleagues were snubbing them
  • Londonwide LMCs (Local Medical Councils) chief executive Dr Michelle Drage reminded them that the real fear is that if the BMA vote to reject the Health Bill, they will lose membership to the rival National Association of Primary Care
  • They debate price competition – which has already been dropped by the SoS
  • Oh, and they also voted in favour of the Health Bill

So as you can see, it was all about putting the needs of patients first. Actually, to be fair, they did discuss patient confidentiality which is important and amendments need to be tabled that will ensure the personal health records remain just that unless permission is given to share them. And brave souls stood up and spoke about the opportunities there are now before them.

I can’t confess to have read every motion that was debated, but 2020health’s concerns on the Health Bill (and their impact on inequalities and structures) remain around as previously stated:

“The important questions about sorting out lines of authority and accountability, scrutinising proposed changes to NICE that will undermine our international standing, driving down demand and patient safety (as previously blogged here and here) are being given very little airing.”

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About Julia Manning

Julia Manning is a social pioneer, writer, campaigner and commentator. Formerly a clinical optometrist specialising in diabetes and visual impairment, she is the founder and Director of 2020health, an independent, social enterprise Think Tank whose aim is to Make Health Personal and Social. 2020health has through research, events and campaigning influenced opinion and action in fields as diverse as bioethics, alcohol, emerging technologies, fraud, education, consumer technology and vaccination. In 2014, 2020health were founding partners of the Health Tech and You Awards with Axa PPP and the Design Museum. Since 2016, 2020health has increasingly focused on digital health and public health in the community. Julia is a Fellow of the RSA and now also a part-time PhD student at the UCL Interaction Centre, studying the use of digital technology for stress management in the workplace. Julia has shared 2020health's research widely in the media (BBC News, ITV, Channel 5 News, BBC 1′s The Big Questions & Victoria Derbyshire, BBC Radio 4 Today, PM and Woman's Hour, LBC) and has taken part in debates and contributed to BBC’s Newsnight, Panorama, You and Yours and ITV’s The Week.
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