Response from Healthwatch Central West London
Healthwatch Central West London (Healthwatch CWL) was pleased to attend a debate at Parliament (Westminster Hall) last week on NHS provision in NW London. The debate, led by Andy Slaughter, MP for Hammersmith, focused on the challenges facing NW London and the next steps that will follow after Shaping a Healthier Future has been shelved.
The debate, attended by many of the NW London local MPs, challenged the Minister Seema Kennedy (Public Health and Primary Care), on the impact of Babylon GP at Hand on local North West London’s CCGs. The NHS England decision to retract its verbal offer to reimburse the local NHS Hammersmith & Fulham Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), places undue pressures on the borough, as it must now accommodate approximately 44,000 additional patients.
The minister announced that the £10 million shortfall caused by GP at Hand will not be covered by NHS England.
This is very disappointing for local people worried about NHS services. Healthwatch CWL understands that CCGs across NW London will pay for their patients with Hammersmith and Fulham CCG having to pick up the rest. This still puts a disproportionate financial burden on Hammersmith and Fulham especially when the GP at Hand service opens to patients in Birmingham
Olivia Clymer, CEO of Healthwatch Central West London, said: “We feel that it is a cause for concern that so little attention was paid to the intense financial pressures now facing Hammersmith & Fulham CCG, this will have a serious impact on staff and patients across NW London.”