latest health care news


NHS task and finish improvement group to tighten conflict of interest rules

A new NHS England task and finish improvement group is in the process of developing stricter rules on potential conflicts of interest such as gifts to medical practitioners.

In a blog post on the NHS England website, Professor Sir Malcolm Grant, chair of NHS England, said that the group had agreed that a “principles based” approach was not enough and “clear rules” should be agreed.

For example, the group has now agreed that staff can accept gifts from patients, but should declare any gift worth over £25, and should decline any gift over £5 from suppliers.

Professor Grant said: “The NHS benefits from knowledge, skills and expertise that has been gained by employees, non-executives and advisers in different yet often closely related contexts. An example of this would be clinically-led commissioning by GPs through CCGs, for which we have recently issued specific advice. 

“Our concern is to ensure that these other interests do not come into conflict with public duty. This calls for transparency and scrupulous behaviour in identifying potential conflicts of interest and avoiding their crystallisation into actual conflicts of interest.”

Mike Thompson, chief executive of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), has also told the group about the ABPI-managed Disclosure UK initiative, which publishes payments from pharmaceutical companies to UK clinicians. Last year, about 70% of recipients of the £340m paid consented to have their data published.

Professor Grant said that although the initiative was “an important first step,” eventually all payments from industry to health professionals should be made public.

He said that the group will consider a further range of issues before opening a formal consultation in the autumn, with the next session considering the best publication regime for registers of interest to ensure transparency.

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an NHE columnist? If so, click here.


There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment


national health executive tv

more videos >

featured articles

View all News

last word

Hard to be optimistic

Hard to be optimistic

Rachel Power, chief executive of the Patients Association, warns that we must be realistic about the very real effects of continued underfunding across the health service. It’s now beyond more > more last word articles >

health service focus

View all News


A Critical Moment for the NHS

07/03/2019A Critical Moment for the NHS

As part of our guest blog series, chief executive of NHS Employers, Da... more >
Do you know if you’re an alcoholic?

06/03/2019Do you know if you’re an alcoholic?

With around 1,500 alcohol-related hospital stays for both adults and under ... more >


How can winter pressures be dealt with? Introduce a National Social Care Service, RCP president suggests

24/10/2018How can winter pressures be dealt with? Introduce a National Social Care Service, RCP president suggests

A dedicated national social care service could be a potential solution to s... more >

the scalpel's daily blog

Focusing on hand injury prevention would ensure vital benefits for the public and the NHS

18/03/2019Focusing on hand injury prevention would ensure vital benefits for the public and the NHS

Ian McNab, consultant orthopaedic hand surgeon and council member of the British Society for Surgery of the Hand, outlines how a focus on prevention to hand injury could wider... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

healthcare events

events calendar


March 2019

mon tue wed thu fri sat sun
25 26 27 28 1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
1 2 3 4 5 6 7

editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital exemplars who were revealed at the same show 12 months earlier.  Jeremy Hunt also stated that by the end of 2018 – the 70th birthday... read more >