Commissioning changes to see £3m community health funding allocated to charities

Melanie May | 16 January 2019 | News

£3 million of CCG Community Health Commissioning in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire will be allocated to the voluntary and community sector, under changes to how services are commissioned.
New community health services, which are about to be commissioned by the recently formed Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (BNSSG), are expected to support one million people. However, in a change to how services are usually commissioned, the BNSSG will require the service provider to sub-contract 3% of the £106 million per year contract (£3.18 million) to local Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) organisations.
The new approach to commissioning is aimed at helping those with health issues, such as diabetes, life-limiting conditions or mobility problems, find relevant support close to home or in their own home, and relieve some of the frontline pressure on GPs and hospitals. It has been introduced by the CCG with support from Voscur.
Sandra Meadows, Chief Executive of Voscur, said:

“Voscur is proud to have supported this change in local CCG contracting, potentially allocating millions of pounds to VCSE organisations in Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire. We believe embedding the involvement of community organisations in this way will mean that people and communities are better supported, that CCG services will be more effective and that the whole system will be improved as a result.
“We’re thrilled that those who need to access services can receive joined-up care delivered in the community, which should also help reduce isolation at a time when people are at their most vulnerable, and relieve pressure on GPs and hospitals.”

Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucester previously had separate CCGs, but the three areas were unified in 2018, bringing together budgets and management. In a similar drive to improve efficiency and ensure continuity of care, the CCG is looking to commission a single community health provider, rather than the three previous providers used, and VCSE organisations can be sub-contracted by this provider for a range of services.
Bidding for contracts opened on 10 January 2019, and the new community health services provider will begin working with the public in April 2020. More information on the process is available on the Voscur site.

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