An independent report on BupaCSH’s musculoskeletal services (MSK) contract has stated that the new service could “negatively impact” the local NHS trust.
Coastal West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) awarded BupaCSH a five-year, £235 million contract to deliver local MSK services in September 2014. Previously, the services were managed by Western Sussex Hospitals Foundation Trust.
However, Coastal West Sussex CCF and the trust jointly commissioned PwC to carry out an independent assessment of the contract after the trust raised concerns about its impact on wider hospital services.
PwC’s report concluded that it could “achieve benefits” but that the “cumulative impact of loss of MSK services” could add up to £13.4 million over the five-year contract. This would result in the trust falling into deficit. This could happen “specifically if providers conduct outpatient activity but do not also provide inpatient services”.
This news comes after Bedford Hospital NHS Trust refused to sign the contract for local MSK services awarded to Circle in November 2014 due to potential impact on the viability of the trauma service.
Marianne Griffiths, chief executive of the Western Sussex Hospitals Foundation Trust, said that if the implications were not mitigated it would “seriously affect the care we are able to provide our patients in our hospitals”.
The new service is still due to begin in April, but if this is to be achieved “there is a considerable amount of work to be completed by all parties,” the auditors concluded.
The CCG’s chief clinical officer Katie Armstrong said the group will now “fully explore the financial and clinical implications” and stated that the contract will not be signed until it has been reassured.
BupaCSH is a joint venture between Bupa and Central Surrey Healthcare. Under the terms of the Sussex MSK contract, BupaCSH is the prime contractor and has to work with other providers to coordinate all treatment and care for people with muscle, joint and bone conditions in the area.