Business anger over NHS cost recovery proposal

Business
groups have reacted with concern over new plans to allow the NHS to recover the
cost of treating people who are injured at work.

Hospitals
have been able to recoup money from insurance companies for treating people who
are injured in road accidents for the past five years. But ministers are now
consulting on whether to expand the NHS Injury Costs Recovery scheme to include
personal injuries.

It
is thought the majority of money will come from workplace injuries, helping the
NHS to recoup £150m a year.

While
the majority of claims will involve company accidents, the scheme would also
allow the NHS to claim for any form of personal injury.

Health
minister Rosie Winterton
said: "It is unacceptable that taxpayers
hav e to pay for the
medical treatment of someone injured at work simply because employers fail to
take adequate steps to protect their workforce.

She
played down fears that it would create more red tape for businesses. "The
scheme will not introduce any more extra regulations for businesses, and will
be based on the current road accident scheme."

But
the Institute
of Directors
said: "Businesses pay tax that pays for the NHS, so why should it pay
again for treatment? It could mean that businesses are left fighting
costly and lengthy battles against claims. That may just be too much for some."

The
TUC has welcomed the consultation, which runs until 17 December.

By Mike Berry

 

 

 

 

 

Comments are closed.