Commenting on today's publication of the NHS Constitution, The King's Fund Chief Executive Niall Dickson said:
'Creating an NHS Constitution in itself will not transform health care in this country. But what it will do is to set out the rights to which patients are currently entitled and the principles that underpin the NHS. For the first time in one document patients will be able to see what they can expect from the NHS – it has the potential to empower them to demand a better service and will be useful for patients and relatives.
'The principles are remarkably similar to those set out in the NHS Act 1946, reaffirming that these are enduring values fundamental to a publicly funded universal system of health care.
'Even if the constitution doesn't have an immediate impact, it could and should become something that providers of NHS-funded care should aspire to and which helps them benchmark the care they deliver.'
Notes to editors:
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