Sir Bruce Keogh of the NHS commissioning board has said that the health service should move towards a seven-day model, and drew on Tesco as an example.
He told the Sunday Times: “If you wanted a day case operation, and you didn’t want to take a day off work, why can’t you have it on a Saturday or Sunday?
“Tesco have had to go through this – it was a complex issue for them.”
However the British Medical Association (BMA) has rebuffed the comparison.
A spokeswoman said: “The health service is not Tesco — I don’t think that is a good comparison.
"As doctors, of course we want to improve services we offer patients, but there has to be investment in sources that underpin that.”
More top news
More people are struggling to get through to their GP on the phone, new research has revealed.
A legendary Bunny, leisure centres and protests from the Anti-Nazi League. There's plenty to learn as Murray and Co bid for tennis glory.
Natasha Kaplinsky has interviewed survivors and liberators of Nazi concentration camps to hear untold stories of the Holocaust