IHPN responds to new study on "NHS privatisation" and mortality rates

Responding to the new study from the University of Oxford on “Outsourcing health-care services to the private sector and treatable mortality rates in England“, David Hare, Chief Executive of the Independent Healthcare Providers Network (IHPN), said: 

“It was disappointing to read the new research from the University of Oxford where the authors of the study themselves acknowledge that they found absolutely no link between the use of independent providers by the NHS and mortality rates. Indeed, looking at the research in further detail, much of the spending on “outsourcing” relates to the purchasing of drugs, medical equipment, IT and other supplies which it would not be expected for the NHS to deliver.

“Patients should be reassured that independent providers delivering NHS funded services, free at the point of use, have a strong track record on safety and quality. Over 84% of acute independent providers are rated good or outstanding by the CQC, which compares favourably to the wider healthcare system. A recent University of Birmingham study also found that elective treatment delivered by independent hospitals is just as safe as in the NHS and in fact is associated with shorter lengths of stay and lower readmission rates than treatment in NHS hospitals.

“Given the important role independent providers will have in supporting the NHS to tackle the growing backlog of treatment, it’s vital that patients are not misled around the quality of care they can expect in the sector.”