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Birmingham and Solihull CCGs take steps to create new single commissioning organisation by April 2018

The three clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in Birmingham and Solihull have agreed to develop a new single commissioning organisation by April 2018, subject to approval from NHS England.

NHS Birmingham CrossCity, Birmingham South Central and Solihull CCGs are undertaking the work in a bid to deliver significant improvements to health and wellbeing for the people of Birmingham and Solihull.

The new organisation will lead the way in developing commissioning reform fit for the 21st century, with radical transformation made possible through shifting resources into prevention, early intervention, communities and primary care. Speaking with one voice for Birmingham and Solihull, the new organisation is looking to lead to way for place-based commissioning, by releasing capacity and expertise to drive continuous improvements to the quality of local NHS services.

This is a two-step process, so before the new organisation can be formed a joint commissioning committee, the Birmingham and Solihull Health Commissioning Board, has been established.  It will meet for the first time in October 2016. The committee will oversee the creation of the new organisation, as well as ensuring that the CCGs continue to meet their statutory duties.

Rhod Mitchell has been appointed as Chair Designate of the Birmingham and Solihull Health Commissioning Board and will play a pivotal role in leading the work of the newly-formed committee. He has been a Lay Advisor at Solihull CCG since September 2015, where he chairs the joint primary care committee with NHS England.

Speaking of his appointment, Rhod said: “I am looking forward to the challenge of bringing the functions of the CCGs together and overseeing this vital first part of the process. The joint committee will be responsible for helping the three CCGs transform into a single commissioning voice and will be working very closely with the clinical leads and the current CCG chairs. It will be essential for ensuring the proactive, robust and cohesive arrangements that will be required, as we work towards the new organisation going live in 2018.”

The three CCGs have a long history of working closely together, already working together to commission acute hospital, children's and mental health services. Working with adult social care, the CCGs have improved and increased the services available to help people recover from a period of illness, so they can be supported to return to their own home. This is all underpinned by Your Care Connected, which allows patients to share the important parts of their medical record, with their consent, to improve the quality of care they receive in Birmingham and Solihull.

Dr Barbara King, Birmingham CrossCity CCG’s Accountable Officer, said: “We strongly feel that bringing the functions of the three CCGs together will really support the development of health commissioning across our area, whilst also providing a strong platform from which to build future models of health and care commissioning.”

Dr Diane Reeves, Birmingham South Central CCG’s Accountable Officer, added: “By having a single commissioning voice, with a shared vision, strategy and values, we will have a greater ability to make decisions need to take on the challenges ahead.”

Dr Patrick Brooke, Solihull CCG’s Accountable Officer, concluded: “This is about creating an organisation that is fit for the future; to improve the health and wellbeing of people living in Birmingham and Solihull, and deliver improved outcomes for our population.”

Rhod Mitchell was appointed as a Lay Advisor in September 2015. He was brought up in Solihull and studied at University College Birmingham. He owns his own leisure and hospitality business and spent the last nine years working as a magistrate in Wakefield, and supporting Wakefield Primary Care Trust and more recently Wakefield CCG.