NHS commissioners in Barking and Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge exit financial directions

18 July 2019

GPs in Barking and Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge have praised the strength of the partnership between local health and social care organisations after it was confirmed that financial directions imposed on the boroughs’ NHS commissioners had been lifted.

The directions were imposed on NHS Barking and Dagenham, NHS Havering and NHS Redbridge clinical commissioning groups (BHR CCGs) in March 2017.

These have now been lifted by the CCGs’ regulator NHS England/Improvement.

The news was welcomed by Dr Jagan John, Chair of NHS Barking and Dagenham CCG, Dr Atul Aggarwal, Chair of NHS Havering CCG, and Dr Anil Mehta, Chair of NHS Redbridge CCG.  

In a joint statement they said: “We’re pleased that the sustained efforts of our staff, GPs and practice teams have resulted in us making significant improvements which NHS England/Improvement has now recognised. This result is testament to their commitment and hard work.

“This progress would not have been possible without the input and support of our local partners in health and social care across the three boroughs.

“Since March 2017 we’ve strengthened our financial governance, delivered a challenging programme of savings and agreed a financial recovery plan with our NHS provider colleagues which aims to bring the BHR system into financial balance and transform services for local people.

“While we’re pleased that our progress has been recognised, we know that there is still much to do if we are to deliver against our recovery plan.  

“Our efforts are now focused on medium and longer term transformation of care. We know that we need to invest to prevent people becoming unwell and to ensure that people are treated in the right place, by the most appropriate person. 

“Transformation boards, working across BHR and involving all partners, are key to achieving better health outcomes for local people. We are already making great progress together.

Jane Milligan, Accountable Officer of the three CCGs, said:

“This is excellent news and I’m really pleased for everyone involved as I know how hard they have all worked to make this happen. The progress we have made in BHR has been down to greater collaboration between partners, strong local leadership and a collective focus on making real and sustainable improvements for the people we serve.

“We recognise there are still areas that need further improvement but we are now in a much better position to focus on them and continue to build on the positive work we’ve achieved.

“I’d like to thank the CCGs’ managing director Ceri Jacob and her senior management team, our clinical chairs, our GP member colleagues across BHR and all of our CCG staff who have worked tirelessly in difficult circumstances to deliver this outcome.”