I want to talk to you about the reorganisation of the Cumbrian health service.
WAIT. DON’T LEAVE.
This week, we found out for certain what was already 99% likely to happen: a merger of the North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust and the Cumbria Partnership Foundation Trust.
What’s so interesting about that, NHS trusts merge all the time.
The difference here is that it’s not very often that an acute hospital trust hooks up with a mental health and community trust.
It could just be the first of many mergers to happen across the UK as the NHS starts to slowly unravel the Lansley reforms, while remaining within the spirit of the law.
It’s also probably inevitable, as the chief executive of both
trusts Stephen Eames admitted on BBC Radio Cumbria on Friday
, because the Cumbria Partnership trust is transferring its mental health services away to be run from Newcastle and Lancashire respectively for different halves of Cumbria.
“…You’re right, I mean, essentially the partnership trust is getting smaller and changes in mental health services coming about later this year would continue that trend.”
That leaves a shell of an organisation in its place, with a few specialist services and community services for North Cumbria.
It means greater financial control and more independence from central government.