Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham has claimed Labour will move away from GP-led commissioning should they win the next general election.

Speaking at the Health+Care Commissioning Conference [12 June] Mr Burnham said the controversial model, which gives GPs the power to commission services on behalf of patients, risks “a conflict of interests.” Instead, he said there should be a move towards a socially-led commissioning model, rather than one that is led by medical professionals.

This would hark back to the old system of commissioning, which would see the NHS dealing with service provision and the local authority looking after the commissioning. Mr Burnham said the scheme has the backing of Labour leader Ed Miliband and Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls.

In his talk at Health+Care 2013, Mr Burnham was eager to stress the importance of “whole person integrated care”, and how looking at physical, emotional and mental wellbeing should be done as a whole, rather than in silos.

One of the driving influences of the proposed change in direction, according to the Shadow Health Secretary, was his personal frustrations dealing with the current system when his grandmother needed care.