Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans

In the forthcoming issue of the New Statesman, senior crossbench peer and former foreign secretary Lord Owen turns on the coalition's reforms of the health service.

In the forthcoming issue of the New Statesman, senior crossbench Lib Dem peer and former foreign secretary, Lord Owen turns on the coalition’s reforms of the health service.

Lord Owen writes:

“[if] the Liberal Democrats cannot call a halt to or, at the very least, slow down, these ill-conceived health reforms they will no longer be able to claim to be the heirs of Beveridge…

“I write as the person who advocated . . . for an internal market in the Health Service. [But] the internal market is not the same as an external market. It was never envisaged that decisions should be taken solely on competitive and financial grounds, without regard for the obligation to provide the best possible medical care.”

The former leader of the SDP, the precursor of the Liberal Democrats, joins a chorus of experts, doctors, and commentators who have this week attacked the coalition’s plans for the NHS. At the weekend, Lib Dem deputy leader, Simon Hughes, told delegates at the Fabian Society conference that there was little prospect of the proposals getting through the Commons in their current form.

David Cameron made a speech on Monday defending the policy while the Bill was published today.

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30 Responses to “Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans”

  1. Helen Thomas

    RT @leftfootfwd: Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans http://bit.ly/fvlDi2

  2. Adam Burrows

    RT @leftfootfwd: Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans: http://bit.ly/gHnyTV reports @wdjstraw

  3. Broken OfBritain

    RT @Hellsbells265: RT @leftfootfwd: Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans http://bit.ly/fvlDi2

  4. landslidepurist

    RT @Hellsbells265: RT @leftfootfwd: Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans http://bit.ly/fvlDi2

  5. Bill Perrett

    RT @leftfootfwd: Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans: http://bit.ly/gHnyTV reports @wdjstraw

  6. Alan W

    Will – I think Lord Owen is officially a crossbencher, not a Lib-Dem peer.

  7. Will Straw

    Alan – You’re quite right. I was, like so many before me, getting him confused with David Steel who I believe is still involved in Liberal politics. But Owen’s intervention is another blow for Cameron and Lansley’s plans.

  8. John Ruddy

    RT @leftfootfwd: Owen turns on health plans http://bit.ly/fvlDi2 <if LibDems cannot stop changes then they are no longer heirs of Beveridge

  9. Watching You

    RT @leftfootfwd: Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans: http://bit.ly/gHnyTV reports @wdjstraw

  10. L DTUC

    RT @leftfootfwd: Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans: http://bit.ly/gHnyTV reports @wdjstraw

  11. Kevin Richards

    Even the leading lights of the original SDP are against this RT @leftfootfwd: Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans http://bit.ly/fvlDi2

  12. Pharma Si

    Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans | Left Foot Forward http://bit.ly/eyaBBr

  13. Richard

    “Simon Hughes, told delegates at the Fabian Society conference that there was little prospect of the proposals getting through the Commons in their current form.”

    Don’t believe a word Simon Hughes says, he is the most duplicitous of the lot. Wouldn’t even respect the wishes of his constituents and vote against tuition fee rises. He’ll be voting with the government all the way.

  14. al

    Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans: “I write as the person who advocated . . . for an internal market in … http://bit.ly/echx3s

  15. Pharma Si

    Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans http://bit.ly/hX05Qn

  16. Steve Kelly

    I completely agree with your Richard. He like the rest of his oily lot left their beliefs at home when they married the Tories for their own selfish interests.

  17. Mark Worgan

    @MissEllieMae http://bit.ly/fvlDi2 Fucking brilliant indeed!

  18. Trevor Cheeseman

    It is important that campaigners against the NHS reforms do not assume all Lib Dems MPs will back it.
    The reforms were not in the coalition agreement nor highlighted during the general election; and after the tuiton fees vote many now have a taste of rebellion. Some, like John Pugh, and other big hitters like Shirley Williams, are openly concerned.
    Lets engage and test them individually now the bill is out.

    Lets engage them

  19. Joseph Burnett

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  20. Dominic

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  21. John Turner

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  22. Neil Kiley

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  23. malcolm

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  24. Peter Marshall

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  25. Pen

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  26. Celia Kelly

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  27. NHS Supporters

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  28. jackie neylon

    Lord Owen, architect of the NHS internal market, says that the NHS reform will wreck the service #pmqs #savethenhs http://t.co/dFoHa2y1

  29. Lord Owen: If coalition continue to appeal Risk Register, Bill must be paused | Left Foot Forward

    […] Lord Owen turns on coalition health plans – Will Straw, January 19th 2011 Share | Permalink | Leave a comment […]

  30. Clegg still has a chance to save the NHS – and his party | Left Foot Forward

    […] their party view. One which both honours their own grassroots view and which neatly knits into Lord Owen’s call for a halt in the third reading until the Transitional Risk Register contents are […]

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