For all the bold claims made at the outset, the bonfire of the quangos struggles to do anything but smoulder. Still, the war on red tape continues apace. And what's not to love about the new, streamlined arrangements for the health service. Away from the public gaze, Voldemort Lansley has been doing what he does best: dashing hopes and drowning kittens. NHS head honcho Sir David Nicholson, addressing the troops, unveils the new framework. Watch out for a slew of new bodies including an NHS Commissioning Board, aka NHS CB, the NHS Trust Development Authority, aka NHS TDA, Health Education England or HEE, the Local Education and Training Boards – close friends call them LETBs – and then there is Public Health England (PHE). To think that once there were just strategic health authorities and primary care trusts. This is leaner, clearer and in all ways better, isn't it?
Certainly it has the benefit of clarity. Under the new arrangements, Sir David says: "The NHS Transition Executive forum has agreed that NHS CB and NHS TDA regional directors should take on management responsibility for the teams managing both 2012/13 operational delivery and planning for 2013/14. Meanwhile NHS CB people appointed to future regional and local leadership roles in NHS CB should take on management responsibilities for the teams managing both 2012/13 operational delivery and planning for 2013/14." There are exciting plans for NHS TDA people too "in respect of the FT Pipeline and provision system", but none of this will impact upon the Clinical Commissioning Groups as they prepare "for their new roles" in Voldemort's great scheme of things. Thank God: an end to all that bureaucracy.