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Swale Clinical Commissioning Group rated 'requires improvement' by NHS England

By Poppy Jeffery

The organisation responsible for overseeing Sittingbourne and Sheppey’s healthcare officially “requires improvement” say health bosses.

NHS England downgraded its rating of Swale Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in its annual assessment for 2016/17. It was previously rated “good”.

The CCG, which buys and plans NHS services in much of the borough, was assessed on 29 areas, including its leadership, how it managed money and its contributions to improving people’s health.

NHS
NHS

There was even worse news for neighbouring Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley CCG, with which Swale held a joint governing body meeting last week, which was branded “inadequate”.

Both CCGs have been provided with a list of recommendations for how they could improve, although neither has been made publicly available.

Patricia Davies, accountable officer for Swale CCG, said she was not surprised by the decline in its rating.

Patricia Davies, accountable officer of NHS Swale Clinical Commissioning Group
Patricia Davies, accountable officer of NHS Swale Clinical Commissioning Group

It reported a £3.5 million funding deficit in March and has seen an increase in demand from a population which is living longer.

“We accept the recommendations and have been working closely with NHS England over many months,” she said.

“It is important to state the rating is in no way a reflection of the hardworking and committed staff in the organisation or in our partner organisations.”

Overall, 99 clinical commissioning groups were “good”, 66 “require improvement” and 23 were “inadequate”.

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