Indicative Timings – 10:20 to :11:05
Update on the Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust
5.1 The Chair opened the item by explaining to members that the presentation slides in the published pack has been reduced, at the Chair’s request, and this reduced version had been published as a supplementary item.
5.2 Colin Merker gave a brief overview of the presentation for members, highlighting the following points:
· This merger has not resulted from one Trust struggling to perform, both Trusts have been rated GOOD by CQC.
· These Trusts do not overlap but offer complimentary services and a number of patients have support from both.
· The merger will create a new offer for Gloucestershire, improving quality, experience and efficiencies for all involved.
· There is a significant and compelling case for change which will allow both services to address the inequities of long-term physical and mental health problems.
· This merger is about enhancing services, not losing them, improving pathways and will simplify the number of providers within the system.
5.3 On questioning, members were keen to understand how involved the patients and staff had been in this movement. In response, members were reassured that these proposals are good for patients and carers and have been widely supported by staff that have seen the move as exciting and holding new opportunities. The Trusts continue to hold interactive workshops to talk about aspirations and concerns as well as a Pulse Survey every month which centres on being involved and feeling informed.
5.4 The Committee noted that there will be no formal redundancies resulting from the merger, although some staff may seek voluntary redundancy. The care services staff will transfer to 2gether and both Trusts are currently producing joint policies to ease this transfer.
5.5 A member questioned whether the Trusts had identified any disadvantages of the merger. In response, members heard the main concern was making sure all areas had equal support due to the amount of changes at one time.
5.6 There was reassurance that there is a formal process in place to measure achievement of objectives for the merger. For each individual change, there would be a number of direct assessments to measure progress and outcomes. As well as the GCCG being under a fair level of scrutiny locally and externally.
5.7 Responding to comments in the presentation around improved quality of care, a member asked what improvements patient would notice on the ground. It was explained at the moment, there is an overlap of the two Trusts involved for around 60% in older people, 55% in children’s and 40% in adults. These organisations currently lack the combined working to reduce complication for patients.
5.8 The Committee were reassured that this wasn’t a move to reduce patients under both services to one point of contact, its about improving the co-ordination.
5.9 The Chair questioned the impact on out of hour’s availability. The Committee heard that both services currently provide 24/7 availability but one of the main hopes from merger is that there will be a reduction in emergency incidents and therefore the need for our of hour care, through early interventions, as in the example given around dementia care.
5.10 There is a new programme called ‘Joining Up Your Information’ which gives local health and social care professional direct access to electronic patient records. This is another pre-emptive solution that will help improve the need for emergency out of hours support over time.
5.11 A member expressed the urgent need for improved mental health out of hours support, in addition to the 24/7 telephone support currently available. The Committee were reassured that a bid was currently in for funding in this area, the merger has also identified financial savings which can be reinvested.
5.12 Closing the discussion, the Chair conveyed the Committees thanks to all staff and patients for the effort put into this merger and requested the following:
· A workshop involving for members on 3 specific service issues relating to the merger: Charlton lane, Dementia and learning disabilities in adults.
· Update on the merger progress at the September meeting.
ACTION: COLIN MERKER/DEMOCRATIC SERVICES