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Analysis: CCGs must be involved in hospital closures

No service reconfiguration should be happening without the support of CCGs, says NAPC chair Dr Charles Alessi

The South London reconfiguration is happening in a period of change: when CCGs are fully operational, no service reconfiguration should take place without them.

In the new world, the only way that large scale configuration is going to take place is with the full support of CCGs. The new way of doing things is that local area teams will only act in situations like this together with CCGs, along as there is wider support.

The difficulty is that during this period of transition, the decisions are being taken before the CCGs are authorised; we’re in the middle of a period of change. But in the future, the only way we are going to successful in terms of reconfiguration is with the full support of CCGs.

As for trust special administrations, it will be unwise if reconfiguration took place against the wishes of CCGs. Lewisham itself is an unusual situation, because of the transition period. When CCGs are authorised, it would be inconceivable for a trust special administrator, to be set up and take decisons like this.

If the CCGs are against the reconfiguration proposed by the administrators, that causes a real problem – what message are you giving to the public if these bodies are going against the wishes of clinical commissioners?

Dr Charles Alessi is chair of the National Association of Primary Care

Readers' comments (3)

  • Looks like Lansleys 4 principles of reconfiguration have gone out of the window. Why is the NHS returning £2.5 billion to the Treasury when they should be using some of it to sort out this mess which includes closing a new £14 million A&E unit.

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  • The government are in full flow now especially as the CCG's of Eastbourne Hailsham & Seaford voted to accept the east Sussex health trust and downgrade our Hospital in the first step to closure

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  • How can the government justify what they are doing????
    With the amount of money each GP surgery will have as a budget in April this year its a bad case of sorry our funding will not cover the cost of what the patients require especially a surgery with 6500 patients on their books

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