MPs urged to publish funding report

Gates at houses of parliament

The heads of the NHS Confederation and Independent Healthcare Providers Network have expressed disappointment that a Health Select Committee report into expenditure on health and care has been shelved, calling on the committee’s chair to publish the report ahead of the general election.

In an open letter to Dr Sarah Wollaston MP on 11 March, Rob Webster and David Hare say they are disheartened at the committee's decision not to publish the report before the dissolution of Parliament ahead of polling day.

The decision, confirmed to the NHS Confederation by a committee clerk on Wednesday, follows speculation in the media that the report would be 'binned'.

Key topic for the public

"Spending on health and care services is a hugely important issue to people who use these services, their loved ones, the staff who are employed by these services, and ultimately to the taxpayer," the letter says. "This issue will no doubt be a key topic for the British public in the forthcoming election." 

It goes on to say: "It is concerning that, as we head into the election, we now do so without a cross-party view from Parliament on the future funding of our health and care services. We know that this is a contentious area, which makes your report even more important."

With an open and honest debate needed on the pressures facing health and care services in the run-up to 7 May, the leaders urge the committee to "fulfil its responsibilities by returning to this matter and publishing their report in good time ahead of the general election."

Evidence from across the sector

The committee's report, originally due to be published this week, builds on evidence provided by organisations from across the health and care sector last year. The NHS Confederation and its Independent Healthcare Providers Network both submitted written and oral evidence to the inquiry, issuing a stark warning over the health of NHS finances.

The news comes just eight weeks before the country heads to the polls on 7 May.

Last month, a coalition of 23 leading health and care organisations, led by the Confederation, called on politicians to be bold and honest about the challenges facing NHS and social care services.

Read the letter

Dear Dr Wollaston MP,

We are writing to you regarding your committee’s inquiry into public expenditure on health and care. The below signed gave evidence to this inquiry.

We are disappointed that, despite much work and considerable input from a broad range of organisation and members of the public, the committee has taken the decision not to publish their report before the dissolution of Parliament ahead of the general election.

Spending on health and care services is a hugely important issue to people who use these services, their loved ones, the staff who are employed by these services, and ultimately to the taxpayer. This issue will no doubt be a key topic for the British public in the forthcoming election.  

It is concerning that, as we head into the election, we now do so without a cross-party view from Parliament on the future funding of our health and care services. We know that this is a contentious area, which makes your report even more important.

During the election campaign and beyond, we need a frank and honest debate with the public about the pressures which face health and care. The Health Select Committee could play a role in facilitating that debate with its clear and considered views. In our evidence we sought to assist the committee in doing so, trusting that the result would be fair, timely and objective.

We urge the committee to fulfil its responsibilities by returning to this matter and publishing their report in good time ahead of the general election. 

Yours sincerely,

Rob Webster, Chief Executive, NHS Confederation
David Hare, Chief Executive, Independent Healthcare Providers Network

Why Register?

Great reasons to register with NHS Confederation

  • Access exclusive resources 
    Access member-only resources and tailor member benefits and services
  • Personalise your website
    Select topics of interest for recommended content
  • Comment and recommend
    Rate and share content with colleagues
  • Never miss a thing
    Register now to keep your finger on the pulse of the NHS Confederation

Log In