The Department of Health and Social Care has rejected proposals from it’s own estates review to merge NHS Property Services and Community Health Partnerships.
In its response to the Naylor review of NHS Property and Estates, DHSC said it has ‘chosen not to merge the existing NHS property companies at the current time’.
The Naylor review, which was commissioned by health secretary Jeremy Hunt and published last year, called for a new NHS Property Board to ‘be the primary voice’ on estate matters and include a new body that brings together NHSPS, CHP and ‘and other fragmented NHS property capabilities into a single organisation’.
In response, the DHSC set up an NHS Property Board, bringing together senior representatives from the DHSC, NHS England, NHS Improvement, NHS PS and CHP.
However, the department added that NHSPS and CHP would not merge and instead ‘continue to provide the asset ownership and management, facilities management and financing functions that they offer currently’.
Furthermore, the Naylor review called for the new board to be an arms-length body ‘so that it empowers speedy executive action and professional credibility within the sector’. But the new NHS Property Board is not an arms-length body and is instead chaired by health minister Lord O’Shaughnessy.