As part of his role as MP, Justin meets regularly with various different organisations to receive local updates. Last Thursday, he met with local GPs from the NHS Clinical Commissioning Group for a update on healthcare and GP provision across Swindon.
Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) were created following the Health and Social Care Act in 2012, and replaced Primary Care Trusts. They are clinically-led statutory NHS bodies responsible for the planning and commissioning of health care services for their local area. They take decisions delivering health services at a local level, rather than through the old centralised system.
Justin has enjoyed a positive and constructive relationship with the CCG, working together to ensure our local NHS can deliver the best possible care & support and assisting in two major successes in recent years.
As part of a joint venture between the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust and the Swindon CCG, a new satellite Radiotherapy Unit at the Great Western Hospital will open. The £2.9million facility, set to open in late 2017, will mean that patients from Swindon and the surrounding area will be able to receive vital treatment in their own town. However high-level discussions had to be re-opened after a change to the Trust status arrangements in Oxford threatened to delay the project. Alongside the work of the Swindon CCG, who raised the matter with NHS England Chief Executive, Simon Stevens, Justin and his South Swindon counterpart, Robert Buckland, wrote to Mr. Stevens, urging him to intervene and ensure the project got the go-ahead. Confirmation of NHS England’s support was received meaning that a dedicated Radiotherapy Unit will be built to Swindon.
Furthermore, over the past three years both Justin and Robert have worked with the CCG to press the Department of Health and NHS England to address the flawed funding formula for local health provision which led to Swindon receiving less support than areas of comparable size, and to extend the budget period from two years to five ensuring that clinicians can plan with greater certainty. Following a number of letters to the Chief Executive of NHS England, and discussions with the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, NHS England has announced that it will amend the funding formula, ending the historic injustice, and increase certainty by moving to five year budgets – a huge win for patients in Swindon!
Justin Tomlinson MP said: “It was productive to have a catch up with representatives from our local CCG. We discussed a number of issues including GP recruitment, the potential need for extra provision due to extra housing and comments on policy areas which I will be feeding back to the Secretary of State for Health. We have worked together closely on a number of issues and I look forward to working with Dr. Peter Mack and Nicky Millin going forward.”