The House of Lords
On 28th January 2013, Lord David Owen introduced a modest Bill in the House of Lords under the constraint of ‘no major reorganisation’, which would re-establish the Secretary of State’s legal duty to provide the NHS, re-instate overall government control and downplay competition.
That Bill – known as the NHS (Amended Duties and Powers) Bill – can be accessed from here.
The Bill fell at the end of the Parliamentary session, and so a second version of his Bill was introduced on 16th May 2013.
The two versions were essentially the same. But the second version included two additional Clauses – to establish public registers of contracts and, in light of the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, to require approval of Parliament and devolved legislatures of any treaty affecting the NHS.
Neither Bill went beyond their formal first readings, and so were not debated.
The proposed NHS Reinstatement Bill goes much further than Lord Owen’s two previous Bills.
The House of Commons
The first proposal for a NHS Reinstatement Bill was made in August 2014 by Professor Allyson Pollock and barrister Peter Roderick.
The August 2014 proposal was put out for consultation, a process which ended in late December 2014.
Based on the consultation Peter Roderick and Allyson Pollock drafted another version, finalised on 21 February 2015.
On 11 March 2015, 12 MPs from five political parties tabled the first National Health Service Bill in the House of Commons, based on the second version of the proposed NHS Reinstatement Bill. The Bill ‘fell’ when Parliament ended before the May 2015 General Election, and was retabled in the current session of Parliament.
On 1 July 2015, 12 MPs from five political parties tabled the National Health Service Bill in the House of Commons, based on the second version of the proposed NHS Reinstatement Bill. The Bill also ‘fell’ at the end of the 2015-2016 parliamentary session.
On 13th July 2016, the NHS Reinstatement Bill was successfully presented in the House of Commons, by Margaret Greenwood, Labour MP for Wirral West. A second reading is scheduled for 4th November 2016.