The Health and Social Care Board and the Public Health Agency will today consider a Commissioning Plan outlining the range of services that will be available in 2010-11. This will afterwards go forward for consideration by the Minister, Mr Michael McGimpsey MLA. The objective of the Commissioning Plan is to improve and protect the health and social wellbeing of the people of Northern Ireland and to reduce differences in access to good health and quality of life.
In the period, 2010-11, £3.6 billion – almost £10 million every day – will be spent on health and social care, including £113 million on specific service investments, but efficiency savings of some £204 million will also be needed. The plan also sets out important future changes that are necessary to help sustain safe and accessible health and social care services across Northern Ireland.
In overall terms, the Commissioning Plan:
To provide for this, a total expenditure of £3.6 billion will be committed this year. This requires savings of £204 million – but the plan also provides for almost £113 million of investment as follows:
This programme of care can be achieved this year without a need for redundancies among health and social care staff.
However, the required savings this year of £204 million will be achieved by measures that include:
The key future changes as set out in the Commissioning Plan include:
To achieve these changes, the following steps will be undertaken beginning in this financial year, and some of this work will be continued into the following two years:
The Commissioning Plan has been prepared in partnership with the Public Health Agency whose Board will also meet today to learn of its proposals.
In recommending that the Health and Social Care Board approve the Commissioning Plan, Chief Executive John Compton said its key value lay in its ability to provide a platform and direction for the on-going development of all health and social care services in Northern Ireland.
And John Compton stressed that at a time of reduced spending on all public services, it was important to balance the need for savings with maintaining an acceptable level of care for the community
“What we have here is a carefully considered and robust framework on which we can deliver savings and to try to protect front line services. However, it remains a big disappointment that some service development plans will not now be achievable,” continued John Compton.
“The guiding principles in all of this will be the accessibility of, the safety of, and the future durability of the services that people will receive,” said the Chief Executive.
Dr Eddie Rooney, Chief Executive of the Public Health Agency, added:
“We have worked closely with the Health and Social Care Board to develop the Commissioning Plan, which places a strong emphasis on the prevention of ill-health and premature death which blights individuals and communities, causing 6,500 avoidable deaths each year in Northern Ireland.
“The Public Health Agency will work with partners in all sectors, including education, local government, voluntary and community, to improve the health and well being of the population”.
Both Chief Executives will be presenting the Commissioning Plan to their Board meetings which take place in Belfast at 10am and 1pm respectively.
The next step in this process is that subject to the Commissioning Plan being approved today at meetings of the HSC Board and the Public Health Agency, it will be forwarded for approval by the Minister, Mr Michael McGimpsey MLA.