No more uncertainty, the WH is not acquiring the national ambulance service

Doubts about the proposed takeover of a Newcastle-on-Tyne based health firm raised by the independent regulator yesterday made clear that the failure to remove such uncertainty and protect investors from abuse by a larger firm would have had a “cumulative effect”.

This reality is all the more welcome given the great deal of confusion over the Newcastle takeover at the National Ambulance Service Group (NASG). The NASG is a “merger of equals” and for the first time, alongside the National Health Service’s Royal NHS Foundation Trusts, a stand-alone NASG is to be responsible for the delivery of National Ambulance Service services.

While the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has carefully considered the merits of the NASG merger it has failed, in my view, to make the important distinction that many commentators have made: the possible benefits from a merger of NASG and the NHS would be severely limited if an acquisitive health related company with other ambitions on the horizon were allowed into the combination.

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