Mersey Care takes over provision of community health services in Liverpool
Patients across Liverpool can expect a smooth and safe transition of community services in new arrangements from today when Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust becomes the new health care provider.
Mersey Care has taken over the running of community health services in the city from April 1. An interim management agreement was implemented last November, involving the two organisations working closely together, which helped to ensure a smooth transition to Mersey Care.
Services which will transfer from Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust (LCH) include district and school nursing, dental services, occupational therapy, podiatry, a specialist skin service, Walk-In centres, community matrons, speech and language therapy and sexual health.
Referral routes and contact details will remain the same and, aside from a new logo on appointment letters and buildings, patients should not see any immediate changes to their usual services. Staff will transfer to Mersey Care, remaining within the NHS and delivering a high standard of care.
It follows NHS Improvement’s decision to select Mersey Care as the preferred provider of Liverpool Community Health’s services. This came after the national body and local Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) put applications from local NHS organisations through a robust and rigorous process.
Joe Rafferty, Chief Executive of Mersey Care, said: “We all know that integrating physical, behavioural and wider social support gives people the best health outcomes and is better value, however that is measured.
“It’s important to remember that community support is what we already do well. It’s also worth remembering that Mersey Care is consistently a top performer in the CQC National Patient Satisfaction survey for community mental health services.
“I’m confident that we’ll be able to do a great job with the many expert colleagues within LCH services. Our intention is to build on the fantastic skills and expertise of LCH staff and ensure they remain front and centre as we work together to achieve our ambition of providing world class care as close to home as possible.”
Johanna Reilly, Chief Operating Officer of LCH, said: “We’re really pleased with the outcome of this process and believe that Mersey Care will provide our patients with continued high quality community services.
“We’ve been working closely with Mersey Care since November when the Trust took over the interim management of our services and this co-operation has helped ensure a continuity of care for residents of Liverpool and our staff.
“This heralds a new chapter for community health services in Liverpool and we’re confident that Mersey Care will build on the hard work and commitment of our staff to ensure a high standard of care.”
For further information contact: Myles Hodgson, Media Manager, on 0151-473-2797 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Communications on 0151-471-2336.
In March 2016 LCH published an independent Quality, Safety and Management Assurance Review which showed that the way the Trust went about its bid to become a standalone Foundation Trust had been one of the factors behind an unsafe drive for savings and a chronic shortage of frontline clinical staff which regulators identified in January 2014.
The Care Quality Commission later found that LCH had recruited more front-line clinicians to ensure safer staffing levels and praised ‘significant improvements in the culture of the organisation.’ The findings echoed the conclusions of the review published in March 2016, which judged that the Trust had ‘turned an important corner’ following several years of deep-rooted problems.
Mersey Care Fact File
During 2016/17 Mersey Care:
- provided care, treatment and support to 20,621 service users in 2016/17 (20,387) in local services and 240 in secure services
- is dispersed across over 36 sites both of its own and premises rented from others
- had 760 inpatient beds as at 31 March 2017
- had 382,301 outpatient attendances and contacts in 2016/17.
*(Statistics based on audited figures for 2016/17)