WORKFORCE: The primary care trust’s board has been asked to approve the creation of a joint commissioning unit with West Sussex County Council.

Board papers for March said both organisations have been developing a section 75 agreement, following the signing of a memorandum of understanding.

This will allow delegation to the County Council from NHS West Sussex of “commissioning functions and associated resources for the better planning, coordination and delivery of services linked to adults and children’s health and social care services” (see below for scope of joint commissioning).

The papers state: “Whilst previous arrangements have led to closer joint working, a formal agreement to delegate commissioning functions and pool resources will ensure the release of greater efficiencies.”

The agreement is set to commence on 1 April, and is due to expire on 31 March 2014. In total the joint commissioning unit will be responsible for a budget of approaching £375m in 2011-12.

The papers note that NHS staff will in the first instance be seconded to West Sussex County Council. The unit will be staffed by approximately 55 whole time equivalents, accountable to the director of joint commissioning.

 

The scope of joint commissioning in year 1 (2011-12) from pooled funds consists of:
 
Adult Mental Health
Learning Difficulties
Telecare Services
Substance Misuse Services for Children, Young People and Adults
CAMHS/Health and Well-being
Carers
Speech and Language Services for Children and Young People

 

The scope of joint commissioning in year 1 (2011-12) from non-pooled funds consists of:
 
Children’s Health services
Children’s Development Centres: therapies and support services
Procurement of residential and foster care services, and residential services for children with disabilities.
Housing Services
Older Adult Services (65+) in Mental Health
Putting People First services
Physical and Sensory Impairment Services