The structure of the NHS – link

One of the initial barriers to investigating health issues is getting your head around the apparent complexity of the UK health system and its jargon. Over at National Health Service History, however, Geoffrey Rivett has put together one of the clearest guides I’ve seen on its various parts and how they connect together, regularly updated to boot (the latest being in November 2011).

The page on A guide to the NHS is worth reading in full for those looking at health issues for the first time, setting out some of the key distinctions (such as that between primary and secondary care), how money flows, and where responsibility sits.

Of particular use are two diagrams that explain how the NHS is currently structured (as of the start of 2012) and how that will change under current plans. Here is the first:

How the NHS is structured, 2011

How the NHS is structured, 2011, image by Geoffrey Rivett

And here is the new structure of the NHS as it would look under government plans.

Planned new structure of the NHS

Planned new structure of the NHS, image by Geoffrey Rivett

If you know of any other useful guides to the flow of money, information and accountability in the health service, please let us know.

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