Hospitals agree to merger

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Hospitals agree to merger

The Trusts running Hinchingbrooke Hospital and Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals have agreed that they will work together on a full business case in readiness for a merger on 1 April 2017.

Both boards have this week discussed an Outline Business Case which recommended that in order to sustain and improve services for patients and the taxpayer in Huntingdonshire, Greater Peterborough and South Lincolnshire, both Trusts would benefit from working as one organisation in the future.

In a joint statement, the two chief executives of the hospital Trusts, Lance McCarthy of Hinchingbrooke Health Care Trust, and Stephen Graves, of Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:  Having discussed the outline business case in public, and meeting separately with our hospital teams, we have been able to hear the initial views of our patients, the public and our staff, which has been very useful.

 Both trusts are passionate about providing quality services that are better, safer and local and that can be easily accessible to the local population. We clearly recognise the risks of not collaborating at all, and so we are determined to reach a solution that will provide sustainable hospital services for our patients and their families for the decades to come.

 We are jointly committed to ensuring the ongoing provision of safe, sustainable core acute services at Hinchingbrooke Hospital. Further work on how services are designed and delivered is taking place as a result of the commissioner-led transformation work, and will not be decided by our boards.

 While there will be a cost to merging, we have identified at least £9m of savings to be made per annum, primarily in back office services, which will help improve the deficit position of both organisations in the future.

 Both Trusts are fully committed to engaging with our staff and members of the public, having started this process in our board meetings this week. This will continue in the coming weeks and months to help inform the Full Business Case. There will be a further period of engagement following a review of the Full Business Case by both trust boards in September, before the final approval by both boards in November 2016.

To register a comment, or to raise a question on the merger plan, please email:
peh-tr.workingtogether@nhs.net

Background
The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough health system faces a significant financial challenge, both now and longer term. Local health and social care organisations have been working together in recent months to identify ways we can collectively meet this challenge.

The work undertaken to date has identified six main areas. In addition to these, is our project to explore the benefits of closer working between Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Hinchingbrooke Health Care Trust. As a result, the two Trusts, with support from NHS Improvement, have been reviewing how they could jointly improve outcomes for patients and achieve savings. The details of this work is documented in a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), signed by both Trusts Chief Executive Officers prior to the work commencing. The MoU contains four options which have been examined for both the benefits and the risks in the Outline Business Case.

The four options are:

Option 1  Do nothing for now
Option 2  Shared back office function  leading and integrating back office and operational services to deliver reduced costs and sustainable services
Option 3  As per option 2, plus two boards, one executive team and one operational organisation
Option 4  One organisation

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