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Shropshire CCG rated as 'inadequate'

By Amy Downward | Health | Published:

The group in charge of health services in Shropshire has been rated as inadequate.

Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has been criticised by NHS England in an Ofsted-style rating system.

Simon Freeman, accountable officer for Shropshire CCG, said the NHS England report did recognise the progress the group has made in relation to financial turnaround and organisational resilience.

In her letter Wendy Saviour, director of commissioning operations for NHS England Midlands and East, said she expects the CCG will come out of special measures this year.

It was placed in special measures in November 2015 so it could receive help from external experts to tackle its growing deficit. The group was then put under formal “directions” last year by NHS England to address its financial problems.

At a meeting of the group in Shrewsbury, Mr Freeman said the latest report reflects the difficult financial situation the group finds itself in. The group is currently forecasting an in-year deficit of £19.4 million.

He said: “NHS England assesses each CCG every year. CCGs are rated based on their performance against these indicators and can achieve an overall rating of either inadequate; requires improvement; good or outstanding.

“We have been rated inadequate. The report did have some positives – not many, but there are some.

“There has been some positive progress in the latter part of the year in regards to finances and leadership.

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“We remain inadequate because of our substantial financial difficulties.”

In the report NHS England said the CCG had one of the lowest rates of digital interaction between primary and secondary care. Julie Davies, director of performance and delivery at Shropshire CCG, said the low rates of digital interaction were not down to GP surgeries.

She said: “Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust still use a lot of referral clinics so we are working with them to increase the number of e-referrals.”

The CCG was also criticised for its referral to treatment and four-hour wait performance which remain some of the worst in the country.

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Claire Skidmore, chief finance officer at Shropshire CCG, added: “The executive team and I have a lot of work to do over the coming months in order to build on work already done to introduce stability, leadership and stronger governance to Shropshire CCG.

“We are working hard to demonstrate that we are ready to be lifted from special measures and will continue to focus energies on actions to improve both financial and quality ratings.

“We aim to deliver an improved rating for 2017/18.”

Amy Downward

By Amy Downward
@AmyD_star

Based at the head office in Ketley covering the north Shropshire area.

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