3.In July 2000 the Government published The NHS Plan, A plan for investment, A plan for reform (Cm 4818-1) and The NHS Plan, The Government’s response to the Royal Commission on Long Term Care (Cm 4818 – II). In September 2000 the Government published Pharmacy in the Future – Implementing the NHS Plan. Action has been taken to implement many of the proposals set out in these documents. In October 2000 the Scottish Executive published the Response to the Royal Commission on Long Term Care and provision is made in the Act for one aspect of this as mentioned below.
4.This Act is intended to deliver many of the aspects of the NHS Plan and the Government’s response to the Royal Commission on Long Term Care that require changes to primary legislation. Its purpose is to improve the performance of the NHS, provide better protection for patients through a faster, more effective and fair system for regulating practitioners, provide better protection around the use of patient information, strengthen the way the public and patients are involved in the way the NHS works, modernise pharmacy and prescribing services, extend direct payments for social services users and provide a fairer system of funding for long term care including measures to reduce the need to sell one’s home on entering residential care.