Regina v North and East Devon Health Authority; North Devon Healthcare NHS Trust ex parte Pow, Geall and Ridd: Admn 4 Aug 1997

The health authority had taken their decision on the future of a hospital without consultation and sought to rely on regulation 18(3), arguing that the ‘decision ha[d] to be taken without allowing time for consultation.’
Held: That argument was reject: ‘As Professor Joad might have said, it all depends what one means by proposal. The answer, in my judgment, is to be found in the Regulation itself. The proposal of a substantial variation, which the Regulation contemplates, is a proposal of such particularity that it can be identified as a substantial variation. It must also be crystallised to the extent that it is capable of consideration by the Health Authority. But since it is the trigger for consultation, it need not, indeed must not, be the subject of any final resolution. If it was, it would undermine the purpose of Regulation 18(1) which is to provide for consultation.’ and ‘In my judgment, a proposal to close Lynton and Winsford’s health services temporarily was of sufficient cogency by 9th April 1997 as to trigger the duty to consult with the Community Health Council. It is true that at that stage the proposal included other possibilities for savings, such as the closure at Torrington, but in my view that does not mean it was not capable of forming the subject of the consultation with the Community Health Council. After all, they might well have wished to debate the merits of those other possibilities as alternatives to the closure of Lynton and Winsford’ and ‘It is true that the proposal had not been considered by the Board, but that does not mean that it was not under consideration by the Health Authority. The trigger to Regulation 18(1) is not confined to decisions as to solutions by the Board of the Health Authority.’
Moses J
[1997] EWHC Admin 765, [1998] 1 CCLR 280
The Community Health Councils Regulations 1996 18(1)
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedRegina v Worcestershire Health Council (Arising From the Complaint of Kidderminster and District Community Health Council) CA 28-May-1999
The respondent had planned to downgrade a local hospital, closing the accident and emergency department. This was a renewed application for leave to seek judicial review of the plan. The health authority initially developed and had before them seven . .
See AlsoRegina v North and East Devon Health Authority ex parte Coughlan Admn 11-Dec-1998
There had been no transfer to Social Service Authorities of the Health Services’ statutory duty to provide specialist nursing and related care to the elderly, and having made a promise to provide a home for life, the Health Authority would be held . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 20 February 2021; Ref: scu.137710