A National Health Service?: The Restructuring of Health Care by John Mohan

By John Mohan

This e-book contrasts the proposals of the Royal fee of the overdue Seventies with the very varied set of priorities enshrined within the 1989 White Paper and describes how the adjustments among the 2 files happened. It argues that the NHS reforms could be visible now not because the inevitable manufactured from technical advancements nor as a consensus reaction to narrowly managerial problems in the NHS, yet particularly as a part of a much broader political technique in the direction of kingdom provision of welfare. The booklet strongly emphasises the asymmetric geographical affects of post-1979 alterations, a subject matter often underplayed through analysts of social coverage, and attracts seriously on formerly unpublished fabric.

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Additional resources for A National Health Service?: The Restructuring of Health Care in Britain since 1979

Example text

He also notes how the term 'crisis' has been appropriated by both left and right. The idea that the crisis was simply the product of a one-off external event (that is, the oil price increases of the 1970s) appeared naive in retrospect as the full magnitude of 'changes in the international political economy which collectively shattered the stability of the post-war economic order' (p. 160) became clear. These changes have not just altered the environment in which 34 A National Health Service? welfare states have to operate, they may also materially alter individuals' interests and associated political mobilisation (p.

Britain does spend less on health care than comparable states and growth in the public sector has been limited; indeed without the contributions of both additional charges and sales and the resources released by CIPs, hardly any growth in resources would have taken place in some years, notably in the mid-1980s. It is not surprising, then, that government spokespersons have sought to avoid such terrain in favour of pronouncements about record levels of activity. Resources are unquestionably being used more 'effectively' if one accepts a narrowly economic view of this question: increased numbers of patients are being treated and they are spending less time in hospital than previously, due in part to less interventionist techniques.

Given that many innovations in the NHS were imposed by fiat from central government, such a voluntaristic interpretation has its limitations. Furthermore, if these were simply technical responses to changed circumstances, does this not present changes in policy as if they were the 'product of more or less rational policy debate within identifiable policy communities' (Cochrane, 1993, p. 81)? Yet one could hardly characteri<;e the NHS review process - open only to a privileged cabal of insiders and dominated by Treasury ministers - as a debate, much less an open one designed to produce consensus.

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