STRUCTURE: NHS Peterborough have been criticised for providing “consistently inaccurate assurance” to the strategic health authority during the process to divest its community services.

A provider development update was submitted to NHS East of England’s final board meeting before it joined the NHS Midlands and the East SHA cluster. It noted that NHS Peterborough was a “key risk and concern” in terms of its community services separation which had missed the national deadline of 1 April.

The update, written by NHS East of England director of strategy and provider development Stephen Dunn, said a “lack of progress, no clear resolution plan and the previous provision of consistently inaccurate assurance to the SHA” was a cause for concern.

It said: “The problems focus on PCT and County Council [Peterborough] contributions to contracts and liabilities. The two organisations have been unable to agree a way forward in terms of the disputes or dispute resolution.”

Cambridgeshire Community Services, the preferred provider to take over services, had been hosting the services while a decision was made.

The update was written on 6 September and the future of NHS Peterborough’s community services has since been decided. Cambridge Community Services will take over the contract permanently but responsibility for social care provision will be passed to Peterborough City Council.

NHS Peterborough interim chief operating officer Russ Platt told HSJ there had been a “discussion” about “the best way to commission social care in the future”.

He said: “What we didn’t want to do was rush to a decision. We wanted to fully examine the issues and come to an agreement.”