The aspiration of providing integrated care across Morecambe Bay will take a step closer to reality this weekend as more than 500 staff working in community services in south Cumbria join University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust (UHMBT).
The staff currently work for Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CPFT) – and will join with acute hospital colleagues on 1 April 2018.
Among the benefits anticipated will be:
- consistent community care across Morecambe Bay
- reduced duplication for our patients
- better admission and discharge procedures
Conversations have been held over the past few months with NHS staff and union representatives from across south Cumbria as part of a formal proposal to transfer the employment of the staff to UHMBT. All the staff have also been sent a welcome pack for their new employer.
Stephen Eames, Chief Executive, CPFT, said: “In south Cumbria we have been working closely with our Bay Health and Care Partners to develop what healthcare in Morecambe Bay will look like in the future.
“As a health and care system, we want to work in a much more integrated and ‘joined up’ way to improve patient care and experience. This has always been the ambition of our Better Care Together strategy.
“It therefore makes sense to work in a more integrated way across hospital and community care, reducing duplication and allowing the services to offer more consistent care across the whole of Morecambe Bay.
“We are very grateful to staff for their patience and support over the last few months as we undertake the formal transfer, we know they are being made very welcome by the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay and wish them the very best for the future.”
Aaron Cummins, Chief Executive, UHMBT, said: “We are looking forward to welcoming the staff to our Trust. It’s a move which begins to make a reality of our vision of one NHS working for the public of Morecambe Bay.
“Our aim has been to make the process as smooth as possible, without disrupting the services to patients.
“Staff will retain their full terms and conditions when they integrate and we have ensured that they have a full opportunity to discuss plans on how services may develop in the future with their colleagues across the health system.”
It is anticipated the community services staff in south Cumbria will be joined at UHMBT by their colleagues working in community services in north Lancashire on 31 July 2018. They currently work for Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and similar discussions with those staff will begin shortly around the detail of their transfer.