• Kernow CCG’s AO will take on dual duties in CCG and council
  • Organisations hope to have somebody in post for start of new financial year
  • Appointment will be for initial trial period of 18 months

A clinical commissioning group is merging its chief officer role with a senior local authority position in a bid to move closer to integrated health and social care services.

Kernow CCG and Cornwall Council will appoint an accountable officer who will take on the duties currently performed by the CCG’s chief officer and council’s strategic director for adult social care and health.

The two organisations are aiming to have the post-holder in place for the start of the new financial year. The appointment will be for an initial trial period of 18 months.

The organisations said the new role has the potential to deliver “far-reaching benefits” by providing “joint oversight, leadership and focus”.

Cornwall’s demography includes a higher proportion of elderly people compared to many other parts of England. 

A handful of areas have merged their CCG chief officer role with a senior position at the local authority. Examples include Portsmouth, Tameside and Glossop, and Bury — although, in these three cases, the CCG chief officer role was merged with the local authority’s chief executive position.

Kernow CCG’s current chief officer is Jackie Pendleton, while Helen Charlesworth-May is the council’s current strategic director for adult social care and health.

Iain Chorlton, the CCG’s chair, said: “We recognise this will be a challenging role, and have taken several months to prepare the groundwork for such an important leadership position which is a key step in how we work together to transform and develop services that meet the needs of our unique population.”