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Message from the Chair, December 2014

You will be aware that we held a webinar on 4 December to discuss the development of Primary Care co-commissioning in Lambeth.  Following the webinar discussion Dr Neil Vass and I circulated the details and asked practices to confirm their support for the CCG's preferred approach to co-commissioning by Monday 22 December. This is obviously an issue of huge importance to all of us in general practice and there will be a further opportunity to discuss this at our All Practice Event on 20 January 2015.

Updates from November's governing body meeting

The public forum that we hold before our governing body meetings is a great opportunity for us to get some feedback and find out what is of interest or concern to the people who come along. We had a well-attended public forum in November. People wanted to talk about arrangements for the proposed helipad at King's College Hospital, arrangements for revalidation in Lambeth, community nursing recruitment and the recently published NHS five year forward plan

At the formal part of the meeting, governing body members also welcomed the five year forward look, published by Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of NHS England and the London Health Commission Better Health for London report to the Mayor of London.  We all agreed that these are very helpful and positive papers and governing body members encourage all members to review them.  

Managing medicines and long term conditions
We had a fantastic presentation by Dr Sadru Keraj, governing body member and Vanessa Burgess our Chief Pharmacist, updating us on the use of medicines and impact on local people with long term conditions.  The presentation included good examples of patient stories where local action has had a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of local people. If you would like to know more about this work contact

Governing body members discussed the planned re procurement of NHS 111 and the supporting service specification for the service.  It was agreed that further work was required on the development of the service specification and this should be re-presented at a future governing body meeting. 

The Governing Body is ultimately responsible for the performance of the CCG and we discussed the current performance and in particular progress against our 2014/2015 Business plan objectives, our five priority programmes of work and our financial position. You can see how we're doing – the greens and the reds in the report. Our performance directly translates into how our patients experience services so this was an important discussion and at the heart of everything we do.

On the Public Health front there was interesting and useful consideration of the current position in relation to Ebola; the risks associated and local arrangements in place. Governing body members also discussed flu planning, immunisation, infection control and cancer screening.

Finally, Dr Hasnain Abasi GP, presented an update on Primary Care Development including next steps in Primary Care Co-commissioning and the transformation of primary care provisions. 

Details of all the papers referred to can be found at

The NHS gets personal
– a new blog that explains personal health budgets – launched by Lambeth GP and governing body member Dr Raj Mitra.

As you know, Lambeth has been at the forefront of the personal health budgets programme. In November Raj published a blog about the benefits of personal health budgets for his patients with long term health conditions. If you haven't already seen it, read it here:  It's a great piece that describes the potential impact of a personalised approach to healthcare.

HSJ Awards
As you may be aware, NHS Lambeth CCG was highly commended and came a close second as one of six finalists for CCG of the Year at the prestigious Health Service Journal's (HSJ) Awards held at Grosvenor House, London on 19 November.

Judges praised the CCG for our work with local communities and partners over the past year to make a real difference through the BIG Lambeth Health Debate - engaging with over 800 people about the future of health in Lambeth  - to developing  our exciting new strategic vision 'Healthier Together' and delivering a range of innovative projects along the way.

NHS Lambeth CGG was also shortlisted in the 'Improving Partnerships in Health and Local Government' category with Lambeth Council and Kings Health Partners, for the exciting collaboration to deliver the £14.2m West Norwood Health & Leisure Centre which opened in July 2014.  The new centre provides leisure facilities, GP surgeries and dental suites and training facilities all in one place.

Going through the application process crystallised what is special about working in Lambeth and it is a privilege to work in such a diverse inner city London borough. This recognition is testament to all our member practices who are working together to make a real difference to improve local health outcomes and I would like to thank you for your support.  I hope this will inspire us all to continue to drive the changes and improvements that are needed to make Lambeth a healthier borough.