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NHS CB chair: ‘Top down approach is dead’

22 June 2012

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The chair of the NHS Commissioning Board (NHS CB) has announced the top down approach of managing and running the NHS is “dead”.

Speaking at the NHS Confederation’s annual conference in Manchester yesterday (21 June), Professor Malcolm Grant said the role of the NHS CB is to enable, facilitate and support CCGs, not to tell them what to do.

“The top-down approach is dead,” he said.

Professor Grant also confirmed the government’s draft mandate to the board will be published next month, with his preference being a “tight and loose” model.

”Outcomes will be tightly defined but processes, so far as possible, will not be,” he said.

“The looseness, or autonomy, will allow those with day-to-day operational responsibility to get on and undertake innovation and improvements in patient care.”

Professor Grant said his call for the NHS CB’s mandate to be “simple and intelligible” has met resistance from those “seeking to stuff it full of sectional interests”.