WORKFORCE: Two clinical commissioning group leaders in Essex have left their roles to return to full time general practice, their respective CCGs have said.

Paul Husselbee, clinical chief officer of Southend CCG, and Sunil Gupta, clinical accountable officer of Castle Point and Rochford CCG, both stepped down from their positions this month.

A statement issued by Southend CCG said Dr Husselbee “found it increasingly hard to balance his responsibilities at the CCG with the needs of his own patients”.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my role and am very proud of everything we have achieved in a relatively short space of time,” he said.

“However, the CCG continues to face some complex challenges and I have found it difficult to balance the needs of my patients as a part time GP with my responsibilities at the CCG.

“And so, regretfully, I have decided it would be better if I stood down so that the role can be taken by somebody who is able to give it their focus on a full time basis.”

Castlepoint and Rochford CCG said Dr Gupta has “taken the decision to step aside and concentrate on his role as a GP”.

A CCG spokesman said: “Having been instrumental in the creation of the CCG, leading the organisation from shadow form to successful authorisation – as well as taking the lead during its first full year of operation – Dr Sunil Gupta has taken the decision to step aside and concentrate on his role as a GP as well as taking on specialist clinical lead roles as a valued member of the CCG’s governing body.”

CCGs in Essex face significant challenges. Southend University Hospitals Foundation Trust was described by regulator Monitor as “one of the worst performing accident and emergency departments in the country”, which “repeatedly failed to consistently meet the national target of seeing most accident and emergency patients within four hours, and ensure most wait less than 18 weeks for operations”.

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