At least one of the 67 CCGs in the second wave to be assessed by the NHSCB believes it will face limits on its freedom because of the financial situation it stands to inherit from the local PCT.
The NHSCB is expected to announce tomorrow whether second-wave CCGs have been authorised fully, or with 'conditions'. These can include closer scrutiny of decision making, limits on freedom to operate independently, or NHSCB control over the appointment of key staff.
Sussex GP Dr Amit Bhargava, clinical accountable officer of Crawley CCG, predicted the organisation would be authorised with conditions due to financial challenges in the area.
‘I am sure we will have some conditions because of the economic reality of our geographic area,' he said. 'Sussex had a huge financial recovery plan.'
In south east London, however, Lewisham CCG expects to be authorised without conditions after drawing up a safeguarding policy that NHSCB staff asked it to implement.
Dr Helen Tattersfield, Lewisham CCG chair, said that if the group was authorised without conditions, it should be trusted to make key decisions about local hospital services.
The CCG recently opposed plans to close Lewisham hospital’s A&E and consultant-led maternity unit to help out South London Healthcare Trust, which was put into administration last year.
Dr Tattersfield said: ‘I think we have done a good job and that we should be trusted to make sensible decisions and we have not been allowed to. Our patients will be in four different hospitals. We are not going to be influencing anything. We won’t have influence in how they administer in secondary care.’