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Medics say no more STPs

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Will this BMA vote take STPs off the menu?

Members of the British Medical Association have proposed that sustainability and transformation plans (STPs) should be abandoned.

The five-year plans, which are humorously referred to as ‘sticky toffee puddings’, are intended to map out health and care services for 44 areas in England. They are put together by NHS organisations and local authorities.

The proposal was tabled at the trade association’s AGM at the end of June during its annual conference in Bournemouth. Members were told that the plans had not transformed NHS funding into a sustainable model. The association said it ‘condemns the woeful way in which STPs have been progressed, turning them into vehicles that try to legitimise further cuts to vital NHS services’.

The BMA motion also calls for more consultations with patients and the public; and says that no beds should be closed until the population’s clinical needs had been assessed. The BMA is keen to see clinicians take the lead in any service reconfigurations; and calls for better funding where transformation is needed.

Further information

British Medical Association: Final motions passed – Tuesday 27 June (see paragraph 41-42)

British Medical Association: Sustainability and transformation plans

BMJBMA annual meeting: STPs should be abandoned, says BMA

The King’s Fund: Sustainability and transformation plans