From Robin on 11th September 2006: I sent the following letter by registered post, fax and email today. The DoH consultation document is here.
See below the letter for more recent footnotes and comment.

22 Armitage Court, Sunninghill, Ascot, Berks SL5 9TA.
Web site:
Tel 01344 620775
Our Ref: DOHNFRL1 11th September 2006

Simon Metcalf, Department of Health,
Room 116, Wellington House, 133-155 Waterloo Rd, London SE1 8UG.
Email: Fax: 020 7972 4202.

Dear Simon Metcalf,

Feedback on DoH National Framework

Thank you for reading this brief public letter, sent by post, email and fax.

I’ll restrict myself to responding to your question 13 in Annex B which starts, “if you would like to say anything else about the issues raised by the National Framework...”, rather than comment on the earlier questions, other than to say that they do not seem designed to provide a timely end to the NHS applying criteria for Continuing Care (CC) which are unlawful. If existing criteria were applied to Pam Coughlan, she would not qualify for 100% NHS funding. They are therefore unlawful. Many will feel that this consultation process is simply yet another “delaying tactic” by the Government, DoH, NHS and Social Services.

Here are what I hope you will agree are constructive suggestions:

The above are clearly only short-term measures, since Pam Coughlan’s health does not set the minimum threshold. This is explained in more detail on, the web site set up four years ago by myself, supported by our “ Campaign” group which includes Pam Coughlan herself, Derek Cole providing expert legal advice, David Gooch and Stephen Squires – “winners” in the first Ombudsman’s Report, and others.

Please provide any reply by post, and also by email if convenient. I would be most grateful if you, or the person reading it, could at least include a handwritten name and date, so that we can see that the letter was read. If your reply can be specific, and from a person rather than an automated reply system, so much the better.

Yours Sincerely

Robin Lovelock , editor of

from Robin on 17th November 2006: the following email was sent to Simon Metcalf yesterday and an automated reply was received within a few minutes, starting "Thank you for contributing to the consultation on the National Framework...".
Dear Simon Metcalf. I've not received a reply, or even an acknowledgment of receipt,
to my public letter sent to you by registered post, fax and email over 8 weeks ago.
For your convenience I include the text of my letter below, as on
I will soon be reporting the status of my letter in terms of any reply from your office.
I would appreciate a reply at your earliest convenience. You are welcome to 'phone me.
Please include something simple in your reply to this email to indicate yours is not
merely an automated response. e.g. "one two three" as numerals.
Many Thanks in advance.
Robin Lovelock
16th November 2006.
Public on e.g. search google on "Simon Metcalf" >>>>>
From Robin on 11th September 2006: I sent the following letter by registered post, fax and email today.... etc (see above)

from Robin on 21st November 2006: Yesterday I received an email from Nicola Watt as follows: "Dear Mr Lovelock, I am happy to provide you with a hand-signed letter in response to your email, and will send this today, but I wanted to reply as soon as possible to allay your suspicion that we were not reading your comments. I have now taken over from Simon Medcalf on this project. I do hope you will understand the lack of reply to your original letter: as the automated reply to your email will have indicated, we have received a very large number of responses to the consultation, which we welcome, but this meant we were unable to reply to them all individually. I can, however, assure you that your comments were indeed read and we are giving due consideration to all responses to the consultation, even though we cannot comment on the specific proposals you put forward in your letter. The Government's response to the consultation will be published soon and that will set out our response to all the input we received. Many thanks for your interest. Best wishes, Nicola Watt"
This morning I received a similar paper letter from Nicola, dated 20th November, with no reference and unsigned.

from Robin on 24th November 2006: duplicate, signed copy received today, with handwritten apology from Nicola - received with thanks by Robin.

from Robin on 3rd August 2007:
The DoH published the results of their consultation process on 26th June 2007 and you may read this here
Their report is available as a PDF file. See the link starting "Download report..."

If you scroll through the list of written responses in Annex 2, you will find "499 Robin Lovelock". How fascinating that there were exactly 499 of these and that mine just happened to be put at the very end. It was certainly not the first or last to be submitted. How interesting :-)

As expected, little has been achieved by this consultation process other than delay. The points in my letter above were not addressed, and this new National Framework does not include the required "Coughlan Test". It remains vague, and NHS can continue to evade it's obligations under the law to fund long term care for all those who qualify. i.e. all those whose care needs are greater than or equal to those of Pam Coughlan.