Health Select Committee on Integrated Care

On Tuesday 14 October 2014, the Health Select Committee, of which Valerie is a member, heard evidence on Integrated Care.
Valerie said:
“At the meeting we heard about the proposed £1.2bn contract to privatise cancer and end of life services by the Clinical Commissioning Groups( CCGS)in Staffordshire. I heard no evidence that this was the best outcome. It seems neither the local people nor the clinicians consider this is the best use of public money. This is taking a big risk with taxpayers money.”

“I was concerned to hear that members of the public have not been properly consulted on this proposal and their concerns have not been addressed. Dr Giles Maskell, President of the Royal College of Radiologists, told me that hospital-based clinicians were not involved in the consultation and that by not consulting secondary care clinicians gives the impression there is something to hide. This is supposed to be integrating primary and social care so all members of the system, including patients, should be fully consulted.”.

“It is difficult to separate cancer services from other services that the NHS provides. Rather than promoting integration, having one prime provider for cancer services will have an effect on Radiologists who deal with both cancer services and non-cancer patients within the NHS.”.

“I asked about particular parts of the contract, including the management fee that the winning bidder would receive and was told that this was ‘commercially sensitive’. I asked about the accountability of the prime provider, and the role of subcontractors. It is still unclear if these private providers will be accountable to FOI requests.”.

“I was concerned that John Sneddon was on the board of Healthwatch and also a non-executive director of TCEOL. This conflict is particularly worrying as Healthwatch should be committed to making the patients’ voices heard within the NHS.”
“I asked the Chief Officer for Stafford and Surrounds and Cannock Chase CCGs, Andrew Donald who had decided this was the best use of public money. He told me he had received help from NHS England Commissioning Support Unit to whom they paid £250,000.”