§ Dr. Wright
To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will publish a table showing for (i) regional health authorities, (ii) district health authorities, (iii) family health service authorities and (iv) NHS trusts, whether the public has a statutory right to attend all board or committee meetings, and to inspect(a) the minutes of meetings, (b) the annual reports and (c) the annual accounts.
§ Dr. Mawhinney
The meetings of regional health authorities, district health authorities and family health services authorities are governed by the Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960. This requires any full meeting of the authority, at which approval for a specific action is required, to be open to the public. The public may be excluded from the whole or part of a meeting when confidential business is to be discussed.539W
National health service trusts are required to have one public meeting per year, in accordance with the National Health Service and Community Care Act 1990, but many more meetings are open than they are legally required to be.
NHS trusts are required to publish annual reports, business plans and accounts. Regional health authorities, district health authorities and family health services authorities are not required to do so, but most publish annual reports, and their audited accounts are publicly available on request.