Back to all Motions

2007 Health Care Service Group Conference
22 December 2006

Conference notes the recommendations contained in the Report of the Review of NHS Pathology Services in England chaired by Lord Carter of Coles and published in August 2006 including:

·The establishment of managed pathology networks;

·Instigating formal service level agreements within trusts between laboratories and clinical departments;

·Empowering commissioners of pathology services to have greater involvement and influence on quality and performance standards through service specifications;

·Initiating a national programme for knowledge dissemination including end-to-end IT connectivity and development of tariff reimbursement mechanisms;

·Workforce reform to provide greater clarity with respect to roles and functions and improved holistic workforce planning arrangements encompassing independent sector providers;

·Setting up pilot projects to test and develop the review recommendations.

Conference welcomes the positive aspects of the review relating to improving strategic national direction and workforce planning and development, and the inclusion of Trades Union representatives on the National Project Team.

However Conference is concerned that these will be overshadowed by the negative, namely the planned expansion of the internal market and private sector involvement in pathology services currently carried out in-house. Conference therefore calls on the Service Group Executive to do make every effort to protect pathology services from marketisation and privatisation including:

1)Maintaining UNISON’s position on the national project team;

2)Ensuring that pilot sites have an identified UNISON contact;

3)Encouraging networking including the collation and dissemination of relevant information between all interested parties through the Professional and Technical B Sector;

4)Taking steps to have the 2005 Private Contractors Agreement extended to cover all private sector provision of NHS Services.

UNISON Professional and Technical B Sector.