Current Consultations 

The Department for Work and Pensions and the Department of Health have published a Green Paper Work, health and disability: improving lives which the Departments are conducting a consultation on. To help inform our response we would be delighted to receive comments to the questions below from members. 

Please email your responses to Anna Lewis by 28th November 2016.


Healthcare Professionals and Health

  • How can the Government bring about better work-focussed conversations between an individual, healthcare professional, employer and Jobcentre Plus work coach, which focus on what work an individual can do, particularly during the early stages of an illness/developing condition?
  • How can the Government ensure that all healthcare professionals recognise the value of work and consider work during consultations with working-age patients? How can the Government encourage doctors in hospitals to consider fitness for work and, where appropriate, issue a fit note?
  • Are doctors best placed to provide work and health information, make a judgement on fitness for work and provide sickness certification?

The Fit Note

  • Turning to the fit note certificate itself, what information should be captured to best help the individual, work coaches and employers better support a return to work or job retention?
  • Is the current fit note the right vehicle to capture this information, or should we consider other ways to capture fitness for work and health information?
  • Does the fit note meet the needs of employers, patients and healthcare professionals?
  • How should access to services, assessment, treatment and employment support change for people with mental health or musculoskeletal conditions so that their health and employment needs are met in the best possible way?
  • How can we help individuals to easily find information about the mental health and musculoskeletal services they can access?

Occupational Health

  • How can occupational health and related provision be organised so that it is accessible and tailored for all?
  • How can this be best delivered? Through employers, through private provision, through the health system, other?
  • What kind of service design would deliver a position in which everyone who needs occupational health assessment and advice is referred as a matter of course?

Data, Outcomes and Evidence

  • What should we include in a basket of health and work indicators covering both labour market and health outcomes at local level?
  • How can government and local partners best encourage improved sharing of health and employment data?
  • What is the best way to bring together and share existing evidence in one place for commissioners and delivery partners?
  • What is the best way to encourage clinicians, allied health professionals and commissioners of health and other services to promote work as a health outcome?
  • How should the Government develop, structure and communicate the evidence base to influence commissioning decisions?
If you wish to respond to the consultation individually please visit Department of Health website.


Consultation Responses

3 June 2015 

Department of Health: Consultation on the implementation of the recommendations, principles and actions set out in the report of the Freedom to Speak Up review

The Department of Health have consulted on the recommendations from the ‘Freedom to Speak Up’ review by Sir Robert Francis QC. In the BSR’s consultation response, the society welcomed the Freedom to Speak Up report’s emphasis on promoting a culture of openness and transparency. The BSR recommended that the NHS requires a wholesale shift in culture to one where the emphasis is on learning and improving the quality of care. 

  Please click here for the full consultation response 



24 April 2015 

Consultations on proposals to extend prescribing, supply and administration of medicines responsibilities to allied health professions

The BSR wrote to NHS England broadly welcoming the proposal to extend prescribing, supply and administration of medicines responsibilities to radiographers, paramedics, dietitians and orthoptists. Specifically referring to radiographers, the BSR stated that enhancing the responsibilities in regards to medicines promotes furthers their utility and promotes service design centred around the rheumatology MDT, citing the example of when nurses medicine responsibilities were expended. 

  Please click here for the full consultation response 



3 April 2015

Health Education England: Primary Care Workforce Commission Call for Evidence

The Secretary of State for Health commissioned Health Education England (HEE) to establish the independent Primary Care Workforce Commission.The Commission conducted a call for evidence to find models of primary care which are integrated, patient focused and will meet the future needs of the NHS. The findings will result in a report which will inform HEE’s education and training priorities. BSR’s response called for best practice in care collaboration between primary and secondary care services to be consistently applied across the NHS, with care coordinated between a multi-disciplinary team (MDT). To facilitate this and to promote early diagnosis and treatment, the BSR stated it would welcome the opportunity to work with Health Education England work to expand training on rheumatic conditions to a wider range of health professionals.



  Please click here for the full consultation response 



31 August 2014

Dalton Review: the independent review into new organisational options for providers of NHS care

The Dalton Review is an initiative from the Department of Health to understand how to secure the clinical and financial sustainability of providers of NHS care through offering new options for organisational forms. The Review ultimately aims to offer all providers of NHS care a new set of organisational options to help overcome these challenges. Seeking examples of good practice of organisational models, BSR’s response draws upon the best practice case studies to highlight innovative models of care in rheumatology.

Please click here for the full consultation response  

16 July 2014

RCGP inquiry into person centred care in the 21st century

The Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) established the Inquiry into patient-centred Care in the 21st Century. The inquiry sought to investigate what models of care will achieve tangible change for patients, how resources should be organised to deliver this, and what role general practice can play in driving this agenda forward. Our response details rheumatology services that have been configured to offer patients benefits, such as improving rates of early diagnosis, but at the same time reducing costs.

Please click here for the full consultation response

3 March 2014

NICE consultation on potential new indicators for the Clinical Commissioning Group Outcomes Indicator Set

As part of the process to develop the Clinical Commissioning Group Outcomes Indicator Set (CCG OIS), NICE invited stakeholders to comment on potential new indicators. The indicators have been mapped against the five domains of the NHS Outcomes Framework. Our response states that we would welcome the introduction of one or more MSK indicators under domain 2 (Long Term Conditions) that addresses the lack of commissioner incentives to deliver quality care for the significant proportion of the population suffering from preventable and manageable rheumatic conditions.

Please click here for the full consultation response

27 September 2013

NHS Mandate revision consultation response

NHS England launched a consultation asking for opinions on the impending revision of the NHS Mandate, which is due every two years. Our response highlights the concern that the revision places too much emphasis on certain health services and that yearly target-setting will detract from the mandate's longer-term approach.

Please click here for the full consultation response 

17 September 2013

NHS Dataset Consultation response

NHS England launched a consultation on NHS data and datasets to ask for advice on the collection of data and its management in English hospitals. Our response highlights the need for improvements to data quality for ambulatory outpatient-based services to inform clinical improvement, amongst other points.

Please click here for the full consultation response 

21 August 2013

NHS Payments consultation response

The health sector regulator Monitor and NHS England launched a consultation earlier in the year on the Payment by Results system to gather feedback. Our response detailed how a new, fair NHS payment system that incentivised quality was needed, as well as ensuring better outcomes through mutually reinforced ad joined-up best practice accross care settings.

Please click here for the full consultation response  

20 August 2013

House of Commons Long Term Conditions consultation response

Earlier this year the Health Committee of the House of Commons launched a consultation into the management of long-term conditions. We submitted a response to the consultation highlighting the need for early treatment and service coordination across all health care sectors.

Please click here for the full consultation response