Health Secretary Andrew Lansley's plans for reform of the NHS have won strong backing from a group of GPs who hope to be granted new powers to commission treatment for their patients.
Mr Lansley's reforms are hanging in the balance after Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg branded them a "disruptive revolution" in the NHS in England and warned he would veto them unless there were significant amendments.
Prime Minister David Cameron, who ordered a "pause" for extra consultation on the legislation, has also signalled he wants to see changes. But in a letter to the Daily Telegraph, a group of family doctors said that they "wholeheartedly support" the proposed reforms.
They called on the Government to press ahead with the Health and Social Care Bill, which would scrap Primary Care Trusts and Strategic Health Authorities and give GPs control of around £80 billion worth of NHS spending, with a remit to commission treatment and services from "any willing provider" - including private companies.
The letter was signed by 42 doctors who head recently-established consortiums - groups of practices which have joined together to wield the new commissioning powers. Together, the consortiums involve 1,100 practices across England.
In direct contradiction to Mr Clegg's argument, they wrote: "The reforms are not revolutionary but an evolution. Our patients should feel comfortable that decisions about the local provision of healthcare are to be taken in future by their family doctors, many of whom they know personally.
"We caution the coalition of the danger of confusing and diluting the responsibility for effecting change in any amendments to the current proposals."
And they added: "Now that there are considerable financial constraints nationally, difficult decisions will have to be made on the provision of care. Surely it is better that these decisions are taken locally by professionals in daily contact with the patients who will be affected by them, rather than by remote administrators."
The letter also welcomed the Bill's provision for combining health and social care more closely. "If successful, there will be enormous benefits to the most elderly, infirm and vulnerable people in our community, whose care is often currently too fragmented," wrote the doctors.
Earlier this week, the Royal College of General Practitioners wrote to Mr Cameron warning that the Bill could damage the NHS.