Healthier budget offered for services in Bedfordshire

Health news
Health news

Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (BCCG)says it will be in stronger position following the publication of NHS England’s financial allocations for the next five years.

It sees BCCG move from a position of historical underfunding to being in line with NHS England budgets based on the needs of the local population.

Last June it announced a whopping £43.2 million deficit for the end 2014/15 and revealed it expected to spiral a further £20 million into the red during the current financial year.

It now says the improved funding for the next five years will allow BCCG to plan more effectively to meet the health needs of local people.

But it warns the way NHS funding is divided up means that BCCG’s current healthcare budget of £500million is still more than £40million less than it should be.

BCCG’s Matthew Tait said: “We welcome NHS England’s financial allocation which will put us in a much better position to purchase sufficient high quality healthcare services to meet the needs of patients in Bedfordshire.

“This year’s increase in funding strengthens our role as commissioners of primary health care services, such as those provided by GPs.

“While the increased budget is good news, we are not complacent. We will continue to focus on our plans for buying high quality healthcare services that are good value for money, and we will continue to work hard to deliver on our financial commitments in the current year.”

Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group is responsible for planning, organising and buying NHS-funded healthcare for the 441,000 people who live in Bedfordshire. This includes hospital, community health and mental health services.

BCCG is run by GPs, nurses, hospital doctors and other clinicians. All 55 GP practices in Bedfordshire are members of the CCG which is divided into five areas – Bedford, Chiltern Vale, Leighton Buzzard, Ivel Valley and West Mid Bedfordshire.