Monitor is dissolving its Co-operation and Competition Panel – the body which advises it on competition issues, the regulator has announced.
Providers are increasingly willing to use the procurement, patient choice and competition regulations to challenge decisions, experts have stated, after HSJ analysis identified six of the first legal challenges to emerge.
The Office of Fair Trading has given merger control clearance for a pathology services joint venture between two London foundation trusts and a private sector provider.
Fresh evidence has emerged of the impact competition probes are having on plans to reconfigure services after Office of Fair Trading investigations were cited as barriers to two major pathology reorganisations.
Monitor has concluded that quality improvements borne of a recent reconfiguration of acute services in Bristol are not sufficient to outweigh the loss of patient choice resulting from the “merger”. The competition regulator said the decision would have “important considerations” for the “wider health system”.
The government is likely to have to legislate if it wants to change the regulation of NHS provider mergers, HSJ has been told.
New guidelines from the NHS’s competition watchdog may lead commissioners to “perceive the scope for regulatory action as being so wide that it inhibits service redesign”, an influential think tank has warned.
The chief executive of healthcare sector regulator Monitor has rejected claims that controversial new competition regulations could lead to a sharp increase in competitive tendering for NHS services.
Healthcare sector regulator Monitor has confirmed the Office of Fair Trading will in future have responsibility for assessing any merger involving an NHS foundation trust.
The government’s changes to controversial secondary legislation covering the contracting of NHS services have sparked disagreement over the effect of the new rules.
The Department of Health has amended key sections of controversial secondary legislation covering the contracting out of NHS services.
The government will amend its controversial competition regulations, minister Norman Lamb has said.
Community services worth billions of pounds are likely to be made subject to increased competition by guidance to be developed under controversial new secondary legislation, HSJ has learned.
Lawyers have warned that new procurement rules due to come into force in April could see significant changes in the provision of NHS services.
The Office of Fair Trading has moved to take over responsibility for assessing mergers between NHS trusts and foundation trusts, in a development which could have significant implications for the “pipeline” of aspirant FTs.
Merger between Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals and Poole Hospital FTs in the spotlight
The Office of Fair Trading has begun a formal review examining what it predicts will be the “first of a number” of mergers between foundation trusts.
The NHS Co-operation and Competition Panel has approved the merger of two Kent acute trusts despite concluding it offered “no benefits” to offset its costs to patients and taxpayers.
Healthcare sector regulator Monitor will have the power to direct commissioners to “withdraw or vary” tenders that breach competition rules, under regulations proposed by the Department of Health.
The Department of Health will consult next month on rules setting out when regulator Monitor can intervene to prevent anti-competitive behaviour by clinical commissioning groups or the NHS Commissioning Board.