Date Published: 

Wed, 02/11/2016

Today, NHS Bath and North East Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Bath & North East Somerset Council have unveiled our Full Business Case for the future of community health and social care services.

The document marks the culmination of almost two years of extensive engagement with thousands of local people and professionals to understand the strengths of current services and identify their priorities for improvement.

The Full Business Case will be presented to the CCG Board and the Full Council at public meetings on Thursday 10 November, seeking their approval to award a seven year ‘prime provider’ contract to Virgin Care to coordinate over 200 health and care services in people’s homes and communities.

A prime provider has overall responsibility for the delivery of services but will also subcontract some services to other organisations and charities with specialist skills to provide high quality and compassionate care for those in need.

The CCG and the Council have followed strict procurement regulations to identify the best possible organisation to deliver the community’s priorities. 

A rigorous process of testing and evaluation involving service users, carers and subject matter experts led to Virgin Care being selected as the preferred bidder for the contract in August 2016.

Some of the reasons for selecting Virgin Care include:

  • Excellent track record of transforming services across the country.
  • Putting prevention first, supporting people to stay healthy and independent.
  • Strong focus on collaboration with GP practices, hospitals and local charities.
  • Cutting edge technology to bring health and care records into one place.
  • Innovative approaches for supporting and motivating the local workforce.

Dr Ian Orpen, a local GP and Clinical Chair of the CCG said:

“Our engagement with the local community demonstrated we have a wealth of community organisations in B&NES like Age UK and the Village Agents doing excellent work to improve the health and wellbeing of the local population. 

“Appointing Virgin Care as a prime provider will not replace these organisations. It will make their job easier by giving them access to additional resources and technology to help them work together more effectively and deliver better outcomes for local people.”

Cllr Vic Pritchard, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Health at the Council added:

“Bath and North East Somerset has long been a national leader in joining up NHS and Council services to provide high quality and compassionate care for local people.  However, the rising demand from our ageing population means our current model is no longer sustainable and we must change the way we deliver services.”

“We have followed a very robust process in line with Government guidelines and we are confident that Virgin Care is the best organisation to deliver the improvements that local people have asked us for.”

Jayne Pye receives a range of support from community services to support her with a long term neurological condition. She is one of 20 community champions who received training to score bids in the procurement process. Jayne said:

“This has been a very thorough process and local people like me have been involved all the way through from the very start.  I have a particular interest in reablement and rehabilitation so I’ve been really impressed with Virgin Care’s proposals to focus on prevention and supporting people to maintain their independence for as long as possible.”

Sonia Hutchison, Chief Executive of the Bath and North East Somerset Carers’ Centre said:

“The Carers’ Centre has worked hard to make sure carers’ needs have been thought about throughout this process and we are really pleased that several carers were involved in the decision-making as community champions.

“We are looking forward to continuing our work ensuring carers are listened to, recognised and supported in the vital role they play in all community health and social care services.”

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