Independent Hospitals

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Health – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 29th February 2000.

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Photo of Gisela Stuart Gisela Stuart Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health) 12:00 am, 29th February 2000

Circumstances on the ground may not be precisely those rumoured to exist. Some hospitals—such as in Bristol, which had a shortage—negotiate with and use the private sector. This winter, local hospitals negotiated with social services and private providers. It is not true that there is a surplus of private beds that the NHS does not use. It is true that we need to build capacity across NHS. Beds in the private sector that are registered but not supported by staff would not be available for use.