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GMB On Cambridgeshire NHS Privatisation

Monday, July 29, 2013

GMB Questions Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) On Concerns Over Outscoring Of Adult And Older People's Services In Cambridgeshire Contract & Plans To Lobby All CCG Meetings

GMB has consistently opposed plans to outsource NHS services to the private sector and have real concerns for the future of the Older People’s Services and the terms and conditions of staff that deliver those services.

The NHS Adult and Older People's services in Cambridgeshire contract worth up to £1billion has been put out to tender in a move that has been condemned by Labour Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham who described the process as ‘the most audacious sell off to date’.

The Adult and Older People's services in Cambridgeshire includes Acute Hospital Unplanned Care (over 65s), Community Services - including rehab and therapy, podiatry, community inpatient beds, specialist nursing, some adult community services, Primary Care, Older People's Mental Health and End of Life Care

It is the largest NHS contract of its type in the UK so far to be tendered and signals a worrying development for the future of the NHS in Cambridgeshire. The Procurement process that is currently underway will continue until the Autumn with a view to the potentially privatised contract beginning in July 2014.

As part of its 'Save Our NHS' Cambridgeshire campaign launched in May this year GMB has vowed to lobby all future meetings of the Clinical Commission Group (CCG) which is overseeing the potential privatisation of the contract. This follows the success of the lobby of the June meeting. (See Notes to Editors for the dates of all scheduled CCG meetings to planed start of the potentially privatised contract in July 2014.

GMB is working continually with community groups and local Labour Party members, councillors and residents in opposing the plans, and fighting the privatisation of the NHS services.

GMB has asked questions and raised concerns with the CCG regarding the potential privatisation of the giant contract including:


· The length of the contact being 5 years instead of the NHS England recommended 3, favouring bids from the private sector and giving them an advantage over the NHS
· The ‘lead provider’ model meaning that whoever wins the tender can effectively sub-contract the services.
· The inclusion of Older People’s Mental Health Services which could expose the Mental Health Trust to risk and also be detrimental to the mental health service which could be lost in the wider Older People’s Service.
· The apparent lack of a risk assessment, Equality Impact Assessment or detail on how the model would be clinically effective
· The move toward privatisation and the effects it would have on services and jobs, terms and conditions of our members that work hard delivering the services; an example of Serco was given as they immediately announced 137 job cuts after being handed a community contract in Suffolk and have been heavily criticised for flaws in the ‘Out of Hours’ service in Cornwall.


Steve Sweeney, GMB Organiser in Cambridgeshire said, “The move to tender services on such a vast scale sets a worrying precedent for the future of the NHS.

GMB is consistently opposing plans to outsource NHS services to the private sector and have real concerns for the future of the Older People’s Services and the terms and conditions of staff that deliver those services.

GMB will continue to fight to protect jobs and services in Cambridgeshire and urge the Clinical Commissioning Group to commit to the long-term future of the NHS and not tender this or any other service to the private sector.”

Ends

Contact: Steve Sweeney, GMB Organiser on 07703 469403 or GMB Press Office: 07974 251823 or 020 7391 6755.

Notes to Editors:

1 The CCG meetings for 2013 that GMB will lobby being at 2pm and will be held at:
Tuesday 6th August, Richard Young Suite, The Boathouse Business Centre, 1 Harbour Square, WISBECH, PE13 3BH
Tuesday 3rd September, Kestrel Room, Hinchingbrooke Country Park, Brampton Road, HUNTINGDON, PE29 6DB
Tuesday 1st October, Beech Conference Room, South Fens Business Centre, Fenton Way, CHATTERIS, PE16 6TT
Tuesday 5th November, Spurgeon Room, Kingsgate Conference Centre, 2 Staplee Way, Parnwell, PETERBOROUGH, PE1 4YT
Tuesday 3rd December, Etheldreda Room, Ely Cathedral Education and Conference Centre, Palace Green, ELY, CB7 4EW
Tuesday 7th January 2014, Cambridge Masonic Hall, Bateman Street, Cambridge, CB2 1NA
Tuesday 4th February 2014 , Roma/Forli Rooms, The Fleet, Fleet Way, Old Fletton, PETERBOROUGH, PE2 8DL
Tuesday 4th March 2014 , Beech Conference Room, South Fens Business Centre, Fenton Way, CHATTERIS, PE16 6TT
2 A copy of GMB’s petition is attached to this release.

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Additional Resources

Save Our Services - Save Our Hospitals No To NHS Privatisation In Cambridgeshire

download docx31Kb (docx) - 29 July 2013

We are concerned over plans to tender NHS services in Cambridgeshire following the failure of the Cambridgeshire Community Services Trust to attain Foundation status.