The Dentist Magazine.

MDDUS urges Lord Chancellor to pause the discount rate change

Published: 15/03/2017

Commenting further on the impact on the NHS and individual clinicians in general following the Lord Chancellor’s decision to reduce the discount rate, MDDUS Chief Executive Chris Kenny said, "The Chancellor’s confirmation of the £6bn cost of the discount rate change increases our concern for our medical and dental members. 

"It makes no sense to proceed with a decision on this scale when Government itself has clearly indicated that the system needs to change – and change urgently.

“For that reason, honouring our pledge to explore all necessary action to protect our members, we have today written to the Lord Chancellor. Advice from Leading Counsel indicates that her decision may be legally flawed, both in its process and its reasoning.

“We are therefore seeking as a matter of urgency the disclosure of a number of documents to enable this to be explored further and are urging her to stay implementation of the rate change until the further work promised by the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the Department of Health has concluded.

“We believe that this is a constructive approach to lessen current uncertainty. We do, of course, reserve the right to take any necessary further action if we conclude that is necessary having studied the Lord Chancellor's response."

MDDUS is also writing to the Cabinet Secretaries for Health and Justice, urging the Scottish Government to avoid precipitate action to introduce changes in Scotland in the face of the legal uncertainties of the Lord Chancellor’s decision and the absence of a full review of the overall impact of any change.

Please also find a copy of the original reaction to the discount rate last month: www.mddus.com/media-centre/press-releases/2017/february/discount-rate-announcement-threatens-higher-cost-to-doctors-and-dentists-mddus-vows-to-explore-all-options-to-help-members/