The Institute of Healthcare Management has become the latest professional body to call on the government to drop its plans to reform the NHS.

The IHM says it has been ”deluged” with responses from members after it asked for views on the Health Bill earlier this week - with 120 replying within five minutes.

”We can now confidently say that health and social care managers do not support the bill and the inevitable consequences of the implementation of it,” it said. ”They and their colleagues have experienced worsening conditions for patients, clients and themselves, as posts are cut, resources diminish, and worst of all, fat cat consultancies are employed to fill the inevitable gaps.”

The IHM has initially given cautious feedback on the bill, urging improvements rather than opposing it. But it says its advice was treated with ”almost total disregard’.’

It joins the Royal College of GPs, the Royal College of Nurses, Chartered Society of Physiotherapists and other bodies in calling for the bill - currently before the Lords - to be scrapped.