NHS reforms will see ‘shut’ signs on hospitals, patients warned

Hospitals will shut, others will lose their accident and emergency or maternity units, and some will be downgraded to glorified health centres because of the government’s NHS shakeup, the head of England’s leading hospitals has warned.

Sue Slipman, chief executive of the Foundation Trust Network, told the Guardian that handing GPs control of £80bn of NHS funds, letting private healthcare firms provide treatment and giving patients more choice about where they are treated – key policies promoted by the health secretary, Andrew Lansley – would increase existing pressures on hospitals so much that some will not survive

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