By Michael Wright, Chief Executive of Nottinghamshire LMC
Between 19 June and 30 June 2019, GP practices across Nottingham City, South Nottinghamshire and mid-Nottinghamshire will have the opportunity to vote on the proposal to merge the six CCGs formally into one combined CCG from April 2020.
The LMC are conducting the vote and ask for member practices of the CCGs to reply to us simply stating either ‘APPROVE’ or ‘REJECT’.
On behalf of the Local Medical Committee, I have been asked by some GPs/practices for a balanced opinion over the pros and cons of voting for the CCG merger. Given our role to represent, support and advise GPs it would seem appropriate that we provide some balance and give voting practices food for thought to help them to make an informed decision.
In this vote, each of the six CCGs need to see a majority of the votes cast in their CCG area vote to approve the proposal for it to be approved overall. We will communicate the outcome of the vote per CCG and overall on Monday 1 July 2019.
As your professional representative body, we have campaigned consistently for you to have the right to vote on this matter as CCGs are constitutionally made up of GP member practices – whether you choose to exercise this right to vote or not is entirely up to you.
By voting, you are ensuring that there is a better chance of the future state of clinical commissioning looking the way you would prefer it to given the choice of retaining the current status of CCGs working separately from an operational perspective but harmonising the managerial and executive functions or merging in their entirety.
We know that for a number of practices that this feels like either a ‘done deal’ or a ‘side show’ that some are not interested in unless it’s clear how it would affect the day job at the business end of day to day general practice. I feel that the CCGs are genuinely keen to know how GP practices feel about this issue hence allowing it to go to a vote.