A public consultation has been launched into the ideas behind bringing together the community health services provided by the two local NHS Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) into one new community based NHS organisation.
Both NHS Telford and Wrekin and Shropshire County Primary Care Trust have to meet a government requirement to separate their community healthcare services from their commissioning or buying responsibilities by 1 April 2011. Over the last few months they have been working together on a proposal to create a new Community NHS Trust for Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin. This work has included discussions with staff, clinicians, partner organisations such as patient representative groups, LINk and CInCH, the voluntary sector, councils and members of the public.
Jo Chambers, Chief Executive lead for the project said: “Both PCTs feel strongly that community health services should continue to be provided by an organisation that specializes in working in local communities, by local nurses and other health staff, in partnership with GPs – these are the people that know their ‘patch’ and understand the needs of their patients. In order to make NHS services work smoothly and most effectively for patients, we are also committed to a new Community Trust working closely with our colleagues in other organisations such as the local acute hospital trust, the mental health trust, local councils and voluntary organisations.”
Chris Hodnett, Chair of NHS Telford and Wrekin’s Joint Staff Consultative Committee said: “Staff at NHS Telford and Wrekin have been involved since the very early stages and support the move to create one community based NHS healthcare organisation. Staff are having their voices heard in these planning stages, which should help us set up an organisation that puts the patient at the centre of everything they do and offer quality NHS services.”
Lynne Weaver, Chair of the Joint Staff Partnership at Shropshire County PCT said: “Staff side is fully in support of the proposals to merge the two organisations into one new NHS Community Trust. Staff have been fully engaged in the process and are continuing to feed into the discussions which will influence the final form of the new organisation.”
Following the split, each PCT will continue its commissioning activities until this role is taken on by the new GP consortia as announced in the government’s health White Paper earlier this year.
Philip Dunne, MP for Ludlow comments: “I have been regularly informed about these plans to establish a Community NHS Trust for our four community hospitals in Shropshire with the other local district healthcare services currently provided directly by the PCTs. I am persuaded that this is the best way to maintain locally responsive services in our communities in Shropshire.
“I encourage local residents to participate in this consultation to make sure that the views of the public are properly considered and fresh ideas taken into account so that we move forward with the best possible structure for community healthcare in Shropshire.”
The consultation on the formation of the new community-based NHS healthcare organisation will run until 17 December 2010. To have your say visit www.telford.nhs.uk/consultations or www.shropshire.nhs.uk/consultations where you can view the consultation document and complete a questionnaire. Alternatively you can call 01743 277688 or email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org to have the documents sent to you or for more information.
In addition a number of exhibitions and events are planned during the consultation period. You can attend and ask questions of staff from the PCTs and pick up the consultation documents and questionnaire. Events include:
- 22 November, 12pm – 2pm – Bishops Castle Community Hospital
- 22 November, 11-1pm – Meeting Point House, Telford Town Centre
- 23 November, 12 – 2pm – Ludlow Community Hospital
- 24 November, 2-4pm – Bridgnorth Community Hospital
- 25 November, 10-12pm – Whitchurch Community Hospital
- 25 November, 12-2pm – First Point, Telford and Wrekin Council
Notes to editors:
Shropshire County PCT and NHS Telford and Wrekin are working together on the proposal to create a new Community NHS Trust for Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin. As with all PCTs across England, the two PCTs are required to transfer the management of community health services to a different organisation by April 2011 to meet national policy. Jo Chambers, SCPCT Chief Executive is the Lead Chief Executive for the two PCTs on the project.
The proposal means that community health staff would be working together to deliver services across Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin. District nurses, health visitors, community physiotherapists, community hospital staff and other PCT staff who provide healthcare to people outside the major acute hospitals would be working together in a new NHS Community Trust for Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin.
For more information contact:
Mathew James, Communications and Marketing Manager, Shropshire County PCT on 01743 497093, or email email@example.com
Pam Schreier, Communications Service Manager, NHS Telford and Wrekin on 01952 580470 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org