• Contract jointly commissioned between Bedfordshire CCG and councils
  • Services to begin in April 2018 and will cover adult and children care
  • Contract restricted to Bedfordshire residents despite area being part of a leading ACS across bigger population

One of the country’s leading mental health trusts has won a £195m contract to provide community health services in Bedfordshire.

East London Foundation Trust has been announced as the preferred bidder for the five year contract, which was jointly tendered by Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group, Central Bedfordshire Council and Bedford Borough Council.

The trust is one of the two mental health trusts rated outstanding by the Care Quality Commission.

A statement by the three commissioners said the joint tender was a “great example of partnership working… in Bedfordshire”.

Bedfordshire is also part of the Milton Keynes, Luton and Bedfordshire accountable care system, one of the first eight announced by Simon Stevens in the summer. The statement does not mention how the local contract fits in with the wider integration of provider services across the region.

The contract, worth £39m a year, will start on 1 April 2018 and covers both children and adult’s community services.

For adults, East London FT is contracted to provide speciality nursing, rehabilitation step up and step down beds, and community geriatricians. The trust will deliver children’s services such as community paediatricians, school nursing, and speech and language professionals.

Andrew Edwards, GP and clinical lead for community health services at Bedfordshire CCG, said: “The new contract means patients will receive care that is centred on their needs, coordinated through integrated multidisciplinary teams and delivered within the community closer to home.”