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Met chief executive set to lead clinical commissioning group

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The chief executive of a council in Greater Manchester is set to take over the leadership of the local clinical commissioning group, Health Service Journal has learned.

The proposed shared leadership model for Bury CCG and Bury MBC would mirror that which has been implemented by several other boroughs in the region.

Stuart North, the CCG’s accountable officer, is due to retire at the end of September, and is set to be replaced by Geoff Little, the council’s chief executive, on a joint basis.

Mr North’s retirement was announced earlier this year. HSJ understands the CCG initially considered appointing an interim replacement while decisions were made over the future leadership structure, but then changed tack. 

Mr Little has led the council since May, after almost 10 years as deputy chief executive for Manchester City Council.

His appointment will be subject to approval by NHS England and the council’s cabinet.

Last year, the region’s devolution team told the 10 CCGs in the patch to establish a “single commissioning function” with their council.

The councils and CCGs in Tameside, Trafford, Rochdale, Wigan, and Oldham all now share a chief executive/accountable officer.

Although the CCGs still exist as statutory bodies, their functions are effectively merging with councils’ social care departments.

The CCGs for Stockport, Bolton, Salford, and the city of Manchester have so far maintained a dedicated accountable officer role.

Dr Jeff Schryer, chair of Bury CCG, said in a statement: “Following an announcement earlier this year in relation to the retirement of our chief officer and accountable officer Stuart North at the end of September, the CCG is in the process of recruiting and appointing a new accountable officer.

“As part of this recruitment process, we have appraised all potential options. With the support of Bury Council, and following an interview and assessment panel, subject to approval by NHS England and endorsement by the council cabinet, Geoff Little OBE, the chief executive of Bury Council, will undertake a joint appointment leading both the CCG and the council.”

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