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Health and Social Care Bill will become law

Author: MS Trust

The Health and Social Care Bill has overcome the last hurdle in a long and difficult passage through Parliament and is now set to become law by the Easter recess.

The final vote for the health and social care bill on Tuesday ended more than a year of debate and several last-minute bids to overturn or delay the legislation.

The Health and Social Care Bill is wide ranging and complex. The Bill, which was first published in January 2011, proposes massive changes to the structure of the NHS in England and also to some of the key principles of the health service.

The legislation will abolish Strategic Health Authorities and Primary Care Trusts and give much greater control over care budgets and commissioning decisions to GPs and other health professionals.

Because of the controversy about its content, the government was forced to stop the progress of the Bill for several months in April and May 2011 when they launched a 'listening exercise' led by the independent NHS Future Forum. As a result, many amendments were made to the Bill.

The Bill has been debated in both the House of Commons and House of Lords and should become law in the next few weeks.

Department of Health factsheets explaining the Health and Social Care Bill
Health and Social Care Bill - where are we now? - Article by Amy Bowen Director of Service Development MS Trust
Finding NHS and Social Care Services
Map of MS Services