Andrew Lansley, Secretary of State for Health, has today published the Health and Social Care Bill 2011.
"Modernising the NHS is a necessity, not an option', he said. 'In order to meet rising need in the future, we need to make changes now. We need to take steps to improve health outcomes, bringing them up to the standards of the best international healthcare systems, and to bring down the NHS money spent on bureaucracy."
And Andrew added, "This legislation will deliver changes that will improve outcomes for patients and save the NHS £1.7 billion every year - money that will be reinvested into services for patients."
We will modernise the NHS by:
Cutting managers, waste and bureaucracy, and giving extra money to front line services to pay for things like the Cancer Drugs Fund, which is already giving hundreds of patients access to the drugs they need.
Giving control over NHS services to frontline doctors and nurses and taking it out of the hands of ministers and managers, so that patients get the best possible care.
Giving local communities powers to stop forced and unwanted closures of A&E and maternity services.
Injecting real democratic legitimacy into the NHS for the first time in almost 40 years through the creation of Health and Wellbeing Boards, which will drive the integration of health and social care.
Focussing the NHS on the results it actually delivers for patients by allowing the best people - whether from the public, independent or charitable sectors - to deliver the care that patients need.
Lansley said, "This is the start of a cultural shift to a patient-centred NHS. The proposals set out today in the Health and Social Care Bill will strengthen the NHS for the future and make the changes that are needed to put more patients and NHS staff in control."
You can read more about the Bill using the document reader below, or alternatively click here to download a copy in PDF format.