Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group today announced the 10 bidders that have passed the first stage of a contest to provide integrated older people’s services worth up to £800m.

Among the bidders that have passed the “pre-qualification” stage of the controversial tender are outsourcing giant Serco, private healthcare provider Virgin Care, and United Health UK, a subsidiary of the US-based health and well-being company.

Other bids going through to the second stage of the tender came from consortia of NHS and private sector providers. These include a consortium made up of Capita, Circle, Cambridgeshire Community Services Trust, and Oxford Health Foundation Trust; and another from Care UK, United Health, Lincolnshire Community Health Services Trust, and Norfolk Community Health and Care Trust.

The full list, published on the website of the East of England strategic projects team this afternoon, was as follows:

  • Albion Care Alliance Community Interest Company
  • Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust with Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Capita with Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust, Circle Partnership and Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust
  • Care UK with Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trusts, Norfolk Community Health & Care NHS Trust, and United Health.
  • Interserve with Central Essex Community Services
  • North Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust
  • Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  • Serco 
  • United Health UK 
  • Virgin Care Ltd

The purpose of the tender is to find one or more “lead providers” to be responsible for providing and coordinating older people’s services across geographic and organisational boundaries.

The statement issued by the CCG today said: “Currently the focus is on measuring and paying for activity, such as hospital admissions. The CCG is proposing to dramatically change this focus to improve quality and outcomes through supporting investment in community services, improving the way in which services are delivered and changing the funding approach.

“The new lead provider(s), will both provide services for older people, and be responsible for coordinating care for older people. Their remit will not just be community services, but will include responsibility for patients who have to be admitted to hospital as an emergency, older people with mental illness and end of life care. The contract will also include provision of some adult community services.”

The shortlisted bidders will soon be invited to submit “outline solutions” illustrating how they would provide these services.

According to tender documents published by the CCG over the summer, the full value of the services out to tender is expected to be between £700m and £800m over five years. The expected start date for the new contract or contracts is July 2014.