PCTs were originally told to come up with plans for how to spin off their comunity service provision by October 2009. The options on the table include creating a social enterprise and integrating them with other NHS organisations.
But in a letter sent to PCT and SHA bosses, NHS chief executive David Nicholson said that 'we will take a more flexible approach to the timetable'.
SHAs will now be in charge of deciding a timetable for developing and testing the plans, he said.
'This does not represent a change in policy,' he added. 'It is about keeping PCT decisions safe while moving faster, not slower, to deliver transformation.'
* Are you happy that this deadline has been abandoned?