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Leaders of CCG trio commit to merger by April

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  • CCG leaders in Manchester committed to merger in 2017
  • Formal arrangement to be struck with Manchester City Council
  • All commissioning functions may transfer into the council in the longer term

The leaders of the three clinical commissioning groups for Manchester have committed to a formal merger by April 2017, according to an independent options appraisal, LGC’s sister title Health Service Journal reports.

375_lgc_hsj_reporting

375_lgc_hsj_reporting

Subject to board approval, North, South and Central Manchester CCGs will also seek to formally establish a “single commissioning function” for health and social care with Manchester City Council, a report by consultancy firm Deloitte says.

Manchester tram

Manchester tram

Commissioning functions may transfer to Manchester council in the longer term

The document suggests the commissioning functions may transfer to the city council in the longer term, though this would be dependent on legislation and the “maturity” of the new arrangements.

The report, published within Central Manchester CCG’s board papers for September, says: “This [single commissioning] function will comprise one statutory CCG for Manchester, which holds a partnership agreement with Manchester City Council.

“It will have one accountable officer and a single executive team including senior city council officers and clinicians.

“After discussion and debate about the merits and risks of a phased approach, CCG and Manchester City Council leaders have committed to working towards a timeframe of April 2017 to implement this structure and new arrangements.”

Progression of the plans is subject to formal approval by the organisations’ boards.

The CCGs and city council have worked increasingly closely since the Greater Manchester devolution deal was signed last year, including forming a joint commissioning board and appointing a joint director to work across the organisations. One senior source has previously described the arrangements as the CCGs acting like a council department.

The developments mirror significant changes taking place among Manchester’s two hospital trusts, which are also planning to merge by April, as well as the planned creation of a single organisation to deliver out of hospital care in the city.

The Deloitte document also sets out potential future options such as the formation of “chains” with other local commissioners such as Trafford “to ensure that outcomes are defined consistently”.

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