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Health Secretary to tackle over-regulation

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has proposed creating a single chief inspector of hospitals and a similar post for GPs, the Guardian reports.

Hunt said there was more than enough data in the NHS to allow a chief inspector to make accurate judgements about which hospitals had problems and to communicate their decisions in a way that the public can understand.

However, he said he did not believe that the Francis report’s 290 recommendations, many of which would require new laws and regulations, were the correct approach to take. H warned that the "elephant trap" of more regulation and over-regulation had to be avoided as a response to evidence presented in reports such as those published by the Francis Inquiry.

He told the health select committee that the evidence gathered during two inquiries was strong enough that some Mid Staffs staff could be charged with "individual manslaughter" or "offences in relation to wilful neglect of vulnerable people".