Actually the answer is more likely that they will not be allowed to, because we value our helth so much in the UK that we could not leave it to the free market.
HealthcareRepublic has some interesting comments from a US academic and expert on commissioning in the US:
"Professor Lawrence Casalino (Weill Cornell Medical College, New York) cited the experience of Independent Practice Associations - the US equivalent of GP consortia - as evidence of this. He said there is ‘no question’ that the vast majority of IPAs ‘failed badly’ by going bankrupt or by not improving patient care. ‘Of the 2000 IPAs that were set up, less than 200 groups were successful,’ he said. "A rate of nine out of ten IPAs failing is terrible. The final remark from Prof Casaline is interesting:
‘Don’t skimp on management funds,’ he said. ‘These organisations will not work without good leadership and management.’Since Lansley is expecting to save £850m a year from commissioning on a budget that is already too small it looks like GP Commissioning Consortia will fail. Except that they won't be allowed to. I wonder how Lansley will prevent them from failing? I wonder if he knows how?