• EY prepares five year plan for Calderdale and Huddersfield Foundation Trust
  • Plan will enable CCGs to launch a public consultation on service changes
  • Process has twice been delayed but consultation expected in early 2016

STRUCTURE: A troubled Yorkshire trust has brought in consultants to draw up a reconfiguration plan for its two acute hospitals.

EY is preparing a five year plan for Calderdale and Huddersfield Foundation Trust, which will enable its clinical commissioning groups to launch a public consultation next year.

A consultation on proposals to close one of the emergency departments at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary and Calderdale Royal Hospital was due to be carried out last year, but was paused after fierce criticism from campaigners.

It was then set to be held this autumn, but was again delayed. EY begun its work in October and is expected to finish at the end of December.

A tender document for the external support, obtained by HSJ under freedom of information laws, says: “The successful five year plan will provide the blueprint for the trust, commissioners, NHS England and Monitor to demonstrate that the trust is clinically and financially sustainable for the next five years, and how it is going to achieve this position.

“A key element of this will be a preferred option and plan for the reconfiguration of the trust’s services across two sites that CCGs can use to commence public consultation.”

The document says the trust’s underlying deficit of £20m is largely related to its “dual site operation and [private finance initiative] costs”.

When plans were first put forward last year, the FT said it would prefer to concentrate emergency services at Huddersfield, and planned care at Calderdale.

The tender document says the costs of the consultancy work are capped at £1m. EY will also need to work with Four Eyes Insight to build on work already undertaken, with these costs included in the overall envelope.

A report to Calderdale CCG in September said it has achieved a “clinical consensus” with Greater Huddersfield CCG and the trust on a “proposed outline future model of care for hospital services”.

It added: “It is clear that detailed work being done between CHFT and Monitor to ensure that the hospital plan for sustainability over the next five years is robust. Without that work having reached a conclusion, commissioners are unable to assure themselves that proposals for change are likely to deliver improvements.”

Meanwhile, Monitor has declined to investigate a complaint from CHFT over the award of a £285m contract for community services in Kirkdale. The FT complained after social enterprise Locala Community Partnerships was handed the “prime provider” contract.