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Prescription for good local health care: Merton CCG unveils 'Whole Merton' approach 

Merton CCG is now three years old and has recently had a change in both Clinical Chair and Chief Officer. The new leadership has taken the opportunity to review the current operating plan, models of care, working and governance of the CCG. There is a desire to ensure that the CCG is both demonstrably clinically led and patients, partners and the public have a strong voice that is heard.‚Äč

The CCG has developed a new vision and strategy. It commits the CCG to working collaboratively with a range of partners across the health and social care system including local authorities and voluntary organisations to implement a new 'Whole Merton' vision.

In particular the CCG will work with the London Borough of Merton as a key strategic partner to further develop and implement the joint commissioning and system leadership arrangements to progress the 'Whole Merton' approach.  The aim is to make local health services far more joined-up than they have been and to work much more closely with Merton Council and voluntary and community to help shape the care offered locally.

This 'Whole Vision' approach will guide its work over the next two years and beyond.

A core part of the work will be the progression of the Merton Integration Project which began in 2013. The partnership, comprising the CCG, Council, NHS Trusts and voluntary sector, aims to develop integrated care between social and healthcare. A Merton model of care will also be developed for out-of-hospital care. This will seek to integrate and join up services around people's needs.

A Merton model of care will be developed for out of hospital care. This will increasingly seek to integrate and join up services around people's needs.

Merton CCG Clinical Chair Dr Andrew Murray said:

"Although many different sorts of organisations are involved in the delivery of care, we are all working towards the same goal of improving the health and well-being of local communities. Our Vision will help us work more effectively with our partners and stakeholders, and help us build a more holistic understanding of what services are needed locally.'

"The CCG will need to work closely with the London Borough of Merton as a key strategic partner to build on and develop our joint commissioning work and system leadership arrangements. It will also need to work much more closely with the vibrant community and voluntary groups in Merton - many of whom offer innovative and thoughtful care programmes. "

The Vision and Strategy also details the CCG's work plans for the rest of the year to March 2016 which includes dealing with the severe financial and operational pressures which the CCG and the wider NHS are facing.

Chief Officer Adam Doyle said: 'We need to make sure that the limited resources we have are targeted at those areas of greatest need and produce the greatest health impact. Our focus must be to make sure the services we buy provides safe, high quality care and helps to improve the health and wellbeing of Merton residents." 

Merton CCG commissions services from a range of providers to meet local healthcare needs. This includes acute hospital care, community healthcare and mental health. Within this the CCG has a particular focus on eight key delivery areas; older and vulnerable adults, mental health, children and maternity services, keeping healthy and well, early detection and management, and urgent care.