The NHS is the world’s largest publicly funded health service. The Government has published an NHS constitution, which records in one place what the NHS in England does, what it stands for and should live up to, and how decisions affecting it should be made.
It sets out principles to guide how all parts of the NHS should act and make decisions.
It confirms the commitment to a service that is for everyone, funded by taxation, based on clinical need rather than an individual's ability to pay, without discrimination of any kind.
It sets out the NHS values formed out of discussion with patients, the public and staff.
It collects together, for the first time, important rights for patients, the public and staff – and it goes beyond rights, with pledges where the NHS strives to go further than the legal minimum. Each is backed up by an explanation of how it is enforced, and what to do if you don’t get what you should.
It also describes our responsibilities – what we can all do to make the best use of the NHS.
To read more about the NHS Constitution click here.