Unison has lost its bid to mount a legal challenge against the white paper ‘Equity and excellence: Liberating the NHS.’

The union’s attempt to secure a judicial review of the white paper was rejected by the High Court on Friday.

Unison wanted to argue that the government had acted wrongly in failing to consult on the principles behind the white paper, as well as on how they should be implemented.

But Judge Mitting ruled that the court could not place a legal demand on the government to consult on its plans.

Unison head of health Karen Jennings said she was disappointed, but the union’s action had “exposed the charade of government claims that it wants to empower patients, the public and staff over how the NHS is run.”

Meanwhile, the British Medical Association has added to the growing volume of concern about the reforms.

Dr Mark Porter, chairman of the BMA consultants’ committee, told BBC radio’s File on Four investigative programme that the coalition’s push to make all trusts foundation trusts by 2014 was “foolish” and would create “unavoidable and unacceptable risks.”

Health secretary Andrew Lansley has given trusts until the end of next month to explain how they are going to achieve foundation status within the time frame set by the white paper.