New contract hopes to ease pressure on QA Hospital

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‘THIS new contract will be the building block to improving services at Queen Alexandra Hospital.’

That is the message from the three clinical commissioning groups (in the Portsmouth area as a new way of paying Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust comes into play.

This is a building block to helping improve the system at QA Hospital.

Michelle Spandley

The arrangement, called an Aligned Incentive Contract, will see QA work closer with other services in hopes to ease pressure and free beds at the Cosham site.

Before April, the CCGs paid PHT for every attendance to hospital from surgery to physiotherapy. It meant the more QA did, the more it got paid.

But now they will get one payment for the year and will use that to pay for services, with the aim of easing pressure on the hospital.

Michelle Spandley, chief finance officer at Portsmouth CCG has been working with PHT to bring in the contract.

She said: ‘This is a building block to helping improve the system at QA.

‘It is about opening that dialogue to transform services without PHT worrying about loss of income. We need to be working together better and making ourselves more efficient.

‘With the contract, PHT will have slightly more money than last year with the amount taking into account what we expect them to spend. But we have to look at savings and take that into account too.

‘PHT is in financial constraints and is under pressure so we all need to work together in order to make the system more efficient.

‘It is about looking what GP and community services are available so people aren’t going to QA unless it is necessary.’

The framework for the new contract comes from Bolton and only around five other areas have a similar contract. Within the contract, there is extra money available for PHT for patients receiving emergency care.

Michelle said it was difficult to forecast those figures so cash can be paid to that part of the hospital.

A spokesman from PHT said: ‘The contract aims to allow us to plan and act as one system, for clinicians and organisations to have conversations about the best way to care for patients without organisational issues or boundaries potentially getting in the way.’