A roundup of Tuesday’s important developments for healthcare leaders

Today’s must know: King’s Fund calls for pooling of health and social care budgets, but is met with a firm “no” from officials

Today’s talking point: Top trust chief speaks out over commissioning “disaster”

King’s Fund calls for pooling of health and social care budgets - but

It says there should be a single budget in every area by 2020 at the latest.

While the King’s Fund are pro-integration, they are not convinced about health and wellbeing boards – the think tank said that HWBs are not fit for holding pooled budgets in their current form.

To find out more about the rationale behind the King’s Fund report, one of its authors, Richard Humphries, has written a comment piece on it for HSJ.

This fund is carrying forward an integration torch previously waved by Norman Lamb: mandating the full integration of health and social care funding was a key policy of the former health minister, as was putting the national health and social care budgets under the sole control of the Department of Health – another idea backed by the King’s Fund. Local budget integration would also have been more likely to come about if Labour had formed a government.

However, the government as it is not amenable. Health secretary Jeremy Hunt has paid lip service to the importance of commissioner integration, and indeed championed the better care fund in recent months. But the DH’s response to this report is a firm “no, thanks”.

Trust chief speaks out over commissioning disaster

The chief executive of Nottingham University Hospitals Trust has urged the NHS to learn from the commissioning mistakes which led to the collapse of his trust’s dermatology service.

Peter Homa - a much respected figure - said the transfer of the service to a Circle run centre in 2013 following a competitive tender by Rushcliffe Clinical Commissioning Group “dismantled Nottingham’s previously distinguished dermatology service”.

The transfer of the service led to an exodus of consultants from the trust’s dermatology department which caused it to scale the service back.

As HSJ’s editor Alastair McLellan tweeted, this should serve as a cautionary tale to other CCGs embarking on service change.