GP says thanks to residents

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COUNTY residents have been thanked by a lead GP from Morpeth for their input into the future set up of health services.

Five workshops recently took place across Northumberland to help form the priorities for the NHS Northumberland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) for 2013/14 and to identify any gaps in services.

CCGs, which used to be known as GP consortia, lie at the heart of the Government’s plans to put local clinicians in charge of health spending on behalf of patients.

The Northumberland Local Involvement Network was involved to ensure that local people’s views would be heard by key officials.

Chief Clinical Officer (designate) of NHS Northumberland CCG Dr Alistair Blair was pleased with the turnout for each session.

“We received a lot of comments which will be invaluable to us with planning future commissioning plans for the next financial year,” he said.

“We are currently working through these comments to helps us to have a better understanding about what’s important to people. This all helps towards making sure that in the future our services are as responsive as possible to the needs and wishes of local people, within the available finances.”

The workshops were the first of three stages of talking to local people and stakeholders about the group’s plans to commission healthcare services.

The CCG represents all 46 GP practices across the county.

Its members are working closely with NHS North of Tyne, the current commissioners of NHS services in the county, so they can be in a position to start taking on new responsibilities from April.