Wigan GPs braced for huge cuts

A GP at work
A GP at work

The daunting savings target facing Wigan health bosses is part of a Greater Manchester total of £141m, according to new figures.

Wigan’s clinical commissioning group (CCG) is facing a deficit of £29.5m for 2018/19, the largest in the city region.

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Combined authority chiefs say although services face “significant financial challenges,” the targets are “consistent with the national picture” for CCGs.

Organisations across the country are being forced to adapt to tackle rising demand and increased costs.

In Wigan, a review is under way with bosses aiming to restructure services to deliver long-term savings to “eradicate the underlying structural deficit” rather than rely on in-year stop gaps.

At a recent board meeting, chief finance officer Paul McKevitt said: “Although we’re saying there’s lot of work to do, we’ve got a plan that will balance the budget for the CCG and that we will have a joined up three-year plan.”

The saving plans are part of the nationwide quality, innovation, productivity and prevention (QIPP) programme, an approach to NHS reforms in light of the current economic climate.

The GM Health and Social Care Partnership is the body made up of NHS organisations, councils and others with responsibility for the city-region’s devolved £6bn health and care budget

A spokesman said: “Greater Manchester faces significant financial challenges across its CCGs due to rising demand and increased costs to deliver care.

“A range of measures to help make savings have been put in place to ensure that as a system GM delivers high quality services for everybody and that people get the right care and support first time round.

“Since taking charge of our health and social care budget, we’ve been working together to make the changes we need for a healthier GM and are addressing wider problems that affect our health – like poverty and loneliness.

“Only by joining up all the things that affect our health can we begin to really change them.”

CCGs are responsible for commissioning healthcare for patients registered with GP practices. Borough finance bosses are set to report to the CCG board in September with budget review results.