New Legislation for Health and Social Care

The response to COVID-19 has seen collaboration across health and social care at a pace and scale unimaginable even a little over a year ago.

The lessons from the pandemic cannot and should not be ignored, we need the right legislative framework to support recovery and it is clear that some elements of the current legal framework need to be improved to support integrated ways of working and ultimately act as a key enabler to support and sustain the process.

Working together to improve health and social care for all is the White paper setting out legislative proposals for a Health and Care Bill 2021

Many of the measures proposed have been under consideration for some time. In January 2019, the NHS published its Long Term Plan which set out the priorities for health and care over the next ten years. Many of the proposals build on the NHS’s recommendations in its Long Term Plan.

Annex A: Proposals for legislation

Working together and supporting integration proposals:

  1. Establishing integrated care systems

  2. Duty to collaborate

  3. Triple aim

  4. Power over foundation trusts capital spend limits

  5. Joint committees

  6. Collaborative commissioning

  7. Joint appointments

  8. Data sharing

  9. Patient choice

Reducing bureaucracy proposals:

  1. Competition

  2. Arranging healthcare services

  3. National Tariff

  4. New Trusts

  5. Removing local education training boards (LETBs)

Ensuring accountability and enhancing public confidence proposals

  1. Merging NHS England, Monitor and the NHS Trust Development Authority and Secretary of State powers of direction

  2. The NHS mandate

  3. Reconfigurations intervention power

  4. Arm’s length bodies (ALB) transfer of functions

  5. Removing special health authorities time limits

  6. Workforce accountability

Additional proposals

The remaining proposals are designed to support social care, public health and safety and quality.

Social care

  1. Data

  2. Assurance

  3. Direct payments to providers

  4. Discharge to assess

  5. A standalone power for the Better Care Fund

Public health

  1. Public Health power of direction

  2. Obesity

  3. Fluoridation

Safety and quality

  1. Health Services Safety Investigations Body (HSSIB)

  2. Professional regulation

  3. Medical examiners

  4. Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) new national (UK-wide) medicines registries

  5. Hospital food standards

  6. Reciprocal healthcare agreements with rest of world countries


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