14.06.18

Wigan take ‘major step’ forward in integration of health and social care

Wigan has established a single commissioning function in a major step forward in the integration of health and social care.

Through appointing Donna Hall, chief executive of Wigan Council, as the new accountable officer for the Wigan Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), a single joint accountable officer has been created for both organisations.

Council and CCG budgets will be pooled and a joint commissioning committee – made up of politicians, clinicians and staff from the two organisations – will ensure that cash is spent as effectively as possible.

The result will be that there is one single function commissioning all services.

Following 2016’s £6bn devolution of health and social care, the 10 boroughs of Greater Manchester were asked to produce a local plan to improve the health of residents and make services more joined up, bringing together leaders from organisations with responsibility for commissioning health and care services forming an important part of this.

Cllr David Molyneux, leader of Wigan Council, said that the appointment was a “major step” towards the council’s vision of transforming services.

He explained: “The long term health and wellbeing of residents will only be improved if organisations and individuals work together.

“We’re already seeing some really positive results of this kind of joined up working between adult social care services, community nursing and GP clusters, and across the borough where public services like the police, health and council are working together under one roof to solve some of the local issues.”

He stressed the importance of services working together in order join up services.

Dr. Tim Dalton, chair of NHS Wigan Borough CCG and local GP, said that despite the progress of health and social care since the introduction of the NHS 70 years ago, the management of the NHS has remained the same – and that this must change.

“Bringing together health and social care commissioning is a tremendous leap forward helping us to take the local NHS in to the 21st century,” he added.

Wrightington, Wigan & Leigh NHS Foundation Trust welcomed the appointment, with chief executive Andrew Foster commenting: “This is the best possible appointment and I very much look forward to even closer working with Donna, the CCG and Council. We already have very similar cultures in our organisations with a strong emphasis on quality, high performance and staff engagement.

“Wigan Council’s The Deal is something that we can all build upon together.”

David Fillingham, independent char of Healthier Wigan Partnership, also welcomed the news.

“All partners have been advocating for their staff to work closely together over the past couple of years and this approach was cemented with the launching of the Healthier Wigan Partnership in April this year.

“Along with this recent news we are confident that our boroughs local people will always continue to be at the centre,” he concluded.

 

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