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The UK Government’s Response to the House of Commons Welsh Affairs Committee Report: Cross-border Health arrangements between England and Wales

The House of Commons Welsh Affairs Committee of the 2010-15 Parliament published its report Cross-border health arrangements between England and Wales on 12 March 2015.1 This Command Paper sets out the UK Government’s response to those of the report’s recommendations that were addressed to the UK Government and the English NHS. Some of those recommendations were also addressed to the Welsh Government and the Welsh NHS. The UK Government has discussed its response to those recommendations with the Welsh Government.

The UK Government welcomes the Committee’s interest in arrangements for cross-border healthcare. In particular:

- taking account of the Committee’s inquiry, NHS England is working with the Welsh NHS to refresh the informal forum that in previous years brought together NHS bodies from both sides of the border. (The first meeting of the refreshed forum is due to take place in early September 2015). It is also considering ways of strengthening this cross-border forum by ensuring the involvement where appropriate of patients and the public, and of national bodies and of providers of specialised services (who are not necessarily based in border areas);
- the UK Government is pleased to have this opportunity to restate its policy that people resident in England should receive English-commissioned secondary care. Achieving this for English residents who are registered with GP practices in contract with the Welsh NHS depends on the co-operation of the Welsh Government and the Welsh NHS. NHS England is working with them to put in place the necessary arrangements. The UK Government wants this to happen as soon as possible.