- Proposed merger of three Merseyside CCGs paused by commissioners
- Commissioner say £1.2bn merger plans need to be “more considered and robust”
- CCG leaders will “revisit proposal in a year’s time”
The biggest ever proposed clinical commissioning group merger has been paused for at least a year, the three Merseyside CCGs involved have said.
The CCGs cited concerns that the £1.2bn merger plans needed to be “more considered and robust” and they had “agreed to delay submitting their application and revisit their proposal in a year’s time”.
South Sefton, Southport and Formby, and Liverpool CCGs said in a joint statement today they wanted to “spend more time considering the implications of a merger for their patients, staff and partners”.
A formal merger application was due to be submitted by NHS England in July, ahead of any organisational change from next April. But the CCGs said this would “divert the CCGs’ efforts away from their priority work over the coming year – a crucial period for each CCG”.
They said they were focusing on “improving financial and health service performance [while] developing a more considered and robust business case that clearly demonstrates the benefits of merging to their GP practice members, local residents and other key partners”.
The combined CCG, plans for which were announced in March, would have the largest budget in the country, of £1.2bn, under the planned allocations for 2018-19. This would be slightly more than the planned allocation for Northern, Eastern and Western Devon CCG.
The statement said governing body members agreed the pause at a joint meeting on 6 June “and their decision will now be recommended for approval at their next governing body meetings”.
It continued: “The three CCGs were required by NHS England to submit their formal merger application by July 2017, ahead of any agreed organisational change from April 2018. Governing body members have instead agreed to delay submitting their application and revisit their proposal in a year’s time. Importantly, this step takes account of the increasing challenges and demands placed on the NHS as a whole and, in particular at this time, by the three local health commissioners.
“At the tri-governing body meeting, members agreed that the original July 2017 application deadline would divert the CCGs’ efforts away from their priority work over the coming year – a crucial period for each CCG.”
“Membership of the North Mersey local delivery system means the CCGs will continue to work together on system-wide programmes that benefit and affect the populations they serve. Good progress and pace has already been made, without the upheaval that organisational or structural change would bring to the CCGs at this present time.”
Joint CCGs statement
26 June 2017