The independent sector: History and role in England

18 December 2013
This briefing provides an overview of the independent sector involvement in health care in England from the past to 2012 including key positions that the RCN has taken on these important issues. 
This briefing has tried to set out some of the key developments in the role of the private and independent sector in the NHS in England. The involvement of the commercial sector remains controversial in view of the mass support for the NHS and its principles. Increasing the diversity of providers does pose some important questions about the health service in England, as well as challenges to the NHS model including equality of access and quality, and enabling companies to profit from delivering NHS services.

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