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ICS stops referrals to largest private provider

A health system has stopped sending mental health patients to the country’s largest single provider of out-of-area placements.

Southern Hill Hospital in Norfolk provided more than 18,000 bed days classed as OAPs for NHS patients last year, with Greater Manchester Integrated Care System (GM) being the main contributor to that total.

However, HSJ has learned that GM’s integrated care board and mental health providers have decided not to send any more patients to the provider.

The move comes after a recent visit to and review of the service at Southern Hill by GM commissioners. This, in turn, followed concerns about the “co-ordination” of patient care at Southern Hill received by GM. The exact nature of the concerns is unclear, and the ICB said in a statement “no significant safety or quality concerns were found and feedback from patients was positive,” when it carried out its review.

The ICB said the decision to cease placements at Southern Hill shortly after the concerns were raised was a coincidence, and that the move was part of its strategy to reduce OAPs.

Read full story (paywalled)

Source: HSJ, 2 May 2024


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