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Reflecting on the 2006 NHS White Paper, Professor Stephenson (now President of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health) observed that successive reforms stemmed from government determination to ensure National Health Service (NHS) Trusts should break even financially. He implied that this goal might be questionable, not least because children's services were likely to suffer disproportionately.1 We now have yet another White Paper (‘Equity and Excellence: Liberating the NHS’) proposing the most fundamental changes to the health service since its inception. If adopted, these proposals will establish a full healthcare market, with all hospitals becoming Foundation Trusts and being able …
Competing interests None.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.