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An open letter to Eastern Cheshire residents by Jerry Hawker, CCG Chief Officer

An open letter to Eastern Cheshire residents by Jerry Hawker, CCG Chief Officer
08 June 2016

Healthcare in Eastern Cheshire is changing

An open letter by Jerry Hawker, CCG Chief Officer

Dear Eastern Cheshire residents,

As chief officer of NHS Eastern Cheshire CCG, I am proud of the improvements we have made to health and care services since we formed in 2013.

I would like to begin by thanking you, the Eastern Cheshire public, for making responsible decisions about your health and wellbeing, such as having your flu jab, supporting the Choose Well campaign and downloading our CATCH app.

At our most recent public Governing Body meeting on 25 May, we discussed plans to address our financial challenges for 2016-17. As with any family or business, we have to try to live within our means, and so we have agreed with NHS England a plan to make savings of £9.7 million in 2016-17. Making these savings will be difficult but, even if we manage it, we are still likely to end the year with a deficit of £10.77 million.

There are many reasons for the financial challenges we face, including the fact we have one of the fastest growing ageing populations in the North West, as well as a rate of demand for healthcare services which exceeds our local growth in funding. While our budget of £276 million sounds very large, it equates to only £1,333 per head of population, which is less than the cost of one hospital admission per year.

It is therefore more important than ever that we make best use of the resources available and ensure that your money is spent wisely, enabling  you to access safe, high quality and efficient healthcare services.

 

To ensure our services are clinically sustainable, safe and deliver the best health outcomes within the funding available to us, we may have to change the location and opening hours of certain services. We may also have to consider whether we can afford to continue commissioning some services that are not mandated by the NHS.

The savings we need to make would be even greater if it wasn’t for the positive work we’re already doing with partners in the Caring Together programme. For example, reducing unnecessary hospital admissions by joining up health and social care services to look after people more effectively at home whenever possible.

Throughout all of our discussions and decisions we may make, we want to hear your views and give you the opportunity to have your say, as patient and public involvement is at the heart of everything we do.

To find out how to get involved, contact Usman Nawaz, our engagement and involvement manager, on 01625 663864 or email usman.nawaz@nhs.net.