GP group to take over health service in Calderdale

A GROUP of GPs who will be responsible for running the NHS when health trusts are scrapped has been announced for Calderdale.

Calderdale will have one group containing every doctors' practice in Calderdale which will maneage the local NHS budget and commission services for patient directly.

Calderdale Commissioning Consortia will be made up of 28 practices, serving a population of 212,633.

It is among 89 groups across England that have been selected to join the first wave of the Government's pathfinder scheme - where groups can share ideas on how to operate.

Dr Matt Walsh, Medical Director, NHS Calderdale said: "Pathfinder status gives the consortium – which is made up of all Calderdale practices - the opportunity to help shape national thinking on how consortia operate.

"Our local GPs will have the opportunity to work with other similar organisations across the region to test out their ideas on designing new ways of working.

"Having one consortium for Calderdale allows us to build on the firm foundations we have already established to really make a difference for local people.

"Being a pathfinder puts us in a strong position to ensure that the best possible care is commissioned for local people.

"We can build on our excellent relationships with partner organisations and all those involved in providing care in Calderdale."

The move is part of the biggest changes seen in the NHS since in 60 years, laid out in the Government's Health and Social Care Bill this week.

It proposes to scrap Primary Care Trusts and Strategic Health Authorities and pass their responsibilities to GPs from 2013.

Secretary of State for Health Andrew Lansley said: "If we want better results for patients and a more efficient NHS, then we must devolve power to GPs

"This group of selected pathfinders is welcome evidence of widespread enthusiasm for taking these ideas forward.

What do you think? Are you a GP in Calderdale? Email the Courier with your views on the NHS plans at joanna.wardill@halifaxcourier.co.uk or call 01422 260208.