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Budgetary handover period begins at Redbridge PCT

31 December 2009

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A PCT in London is the first in the country to move ahead with a phased handover of budgetary control.

GPs working for NHS Redbridge will decide how and where money is spent on healthcare.

Five polysystems have replaced the north-east London borough’s three practice-based commissioning clusters. They were in charge of representing the 51 practices that fall within the NHS Redbridge area.

Once the handover is complete, the GP-led network will have control of a budget of around £400m.

The care professionals will be responsible for commissioning services and meeting health targets set by the Department of Health and NHS Redbridge.

Each polysystem covers a distinct geographical area of the borough and is managed by a polyboard made up of local GPs. The polysystems are each designed around a “hub and spoke” model.

A multipurpose polyclinic sits at the heart or hub of each polysystem with surrounding GP surgeries, pharmacies and hospitals forming the spokes to create a seamless level of integrated care.

The polyclinics will offer a wide range of health services under one roof, including many traditionally hospital-based services, such as diagnostics and outpatient appointments.

Local GP Narinder Sharma, clinical director for Loxford Polysystem, said: “Health needs vary from area to area and being able to focus the appropriate resources on specific areas as well as anticipate future health trends is a great step forward.”

Copyright © Press Association 2009