Public to be asked their views about local NHS changes

Views will be sought next month on a proposal to form one NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) for Herefordshire and Worcestershire to replace the four current CCGs.

The proposal will not affect any health or care services provided by NHS organisations or local councils across the area, but aims to reduce the duplication of roles and governance that sit behind the scenes within the four organisations.

Simon Trickett, Accountable Officer for the Herefordshire and Worcestershire CCGs said: “Our main priority is, and always will be, our patients and the health and wellbeing of our local population. Having already set up combined governance and decision-making arrangements across the four CCGs, this is the next logical step. We will not lose sight of the different needs of our local communities and we will continue to work with local organisations so that people’s needs, views and experiences remain at the heart of our decision making.

“All NHS organisations are required by NHS England and NHS Improvement to reduce their running costs by 20% by 31 March 2020, which means finding a saving of nearly £2 million across Herefordshire and Worcestershire. By creating one single CCG, instead of the current four, we estimate that we can save the required £2 million.

“I would like to emphasise that this won’t have any impact on NHS services being provided across Herefordshire and Worcestershire; this is about reducing some of the bureaucracy and duplication that running four CCGs brings.”

CCGs, set up by the Health and Social Care Act 2012, are clinically-led statutory NHS bodies which commission healthcare services across local areas. They are organisations combining the expertise of local family doctors (GPs) and NHS managers; putting local doctors and nurses at the very heart of deciding what health services to provide, where and how.

Currently, the NHS CCGs covering Herefordshire and Worcestershire are NHS Herefordshire CCG, NHS Redditch and Bromsgrove CCG, NHS South Worcestershire CCG and NHS Wyre Forest CCG. Between them they plan healthcare services for over 750,000 people, working to enhance population health, tackle health inequalities and improve quality of life.

The four CCGs already work together as part of the Herefordshire and Worcestershire Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) which brings together commissioners, health and care and providers and councils, and which and sets a clear direction for planning and partnership working. The proposal to merge also forms part of the NHS Long Term Plan, published in January this year, and the indication that NHS England expects to see CCGs coming together in each STP area as part of more streamlined commissioning arrangements.

Sent on behalf of:

NHS Redditch and Bromsgrove CCG, NHS South Worcestershire CCG and NHS Wyre Forest CCG, NHS Herefordshire CCG

The CCGs will be seeking people’s views on the proposal throughout June as part of a public consultation. Once people’s views have been received, they will be summarised and considered ahead of any decision to form a single CCG.