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National Health Service Act 2006

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

248Independent advocacy services

(1)The Secretary of State must arrange, to such extent as he considers necessary to meet all reasonable requirements, for the provision of independent advocacy services.

(2)“Independent advocacy services” are services providing assistance (by way of representation or otherwise) to individuals making or intending to make—

(a)a complaint under a procedure operated by a health service body or independent provider,

(b)a complaint under section 113(1) or (2) of the Health and Social Care (Community Health and Standards) Act 2003 (c. 43),

(c)a complaint to the Health Service Commissioner for England or the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales,

(d)a complaint of a prescribed description which relates to the provision of services as part of the health service and—

(i)is made under a procedure of a prescribed description, or

(ii)gives rise, or may give rise, to proceedings of a prescribed description.

(3)In subsection (2)—

  • “health service body” means—

    (a)

    in relation to England, a body which, under section 2(1) of the Health Service Commissioners Act 1993 (c. 46), is subject to investigation by the Health Service Commissioner for England,

    (b)

    in relation to Wales, a Welsh health service body (within the meaning of the Public Services Ombudsman (Wales) Act 2005 (c. 10)),

  • “independent provider” means—

    (a)

    in relation to England, a person who, under section 2B(1) of the Health Service Commissioners Act 1993, is subject to investigation by the Health Service Commissioner for England,

    (b)

    in relation to Wales, a person who is an independent provider in Wales (within the meaning of the Public Services Ombudsman (Wales) Act 2005).

(4)The Secretary of State may make such other arrangements as he considers appropriate for the provision of assistance to individuals in connection with complaints relating to the provision of services as part of the health service.

(5)In making arrangements under this section the Secretary of State must have regard to the principle that the provision of services under the arrangements should, so far as practicable, be independent of any person who is—

(a)the subject of a relevant complaint, or

(b)involved in investigating or adjudicating on such a complaint.

(6)The Secretary of State may make payments to any person in pursuance of arrangements under this section.

(7)The Secretary of State may direct a Patients' Forum established for a Primary Care Trust to exercise any of his functions under this section so far as they relate to independent advocacy services provided to—

(a)persons in the area of the Primary Care Trust, or

(b)persons to whom services have been provided by or under arrangements with the Primary Care Trust.

(8)If the Secretary of State does so—

(a)the functions of that Patients' Forum must be taken to include those functions, but

(b)the Patients' Forum may not make any arrangements with itself under this section.

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