GP services for the homeless targeted by social enterprise

Primary care access for the vulnerable and homeless is one of 32 proposed social enterprises in the third wave of a government scheme enabling NHS staff to break away from the health service.

Mr Lansley: an additional £4.4m would be made available through the Department’s Social Enterprise Investment Fund

The latest proposals put forward from frontline staff under the Right to Request scheme were announced by Health Secretary Andrew Lansley this week.

The DoH has said that, by becoming social enterprises, clinical staff can gain freedom to make their own decisions about the services they deliver locally.

This would allow them to be more responsive to their patients’ needs, the DoH said.

Since the 2008 launch of the Right to Request initiative, 61 proposals have been put forward by staff, including those announced today.

These 61 proposals would transfer an estimated £900m of services and almost 25,000 NHS staff into the social enterprise sector.

Mr Lansley said: ‘This is about a fundamental power shift, taking power from Whitehall and placing it in the hands of frontline staff who know best the needs of their communities. This is what the Big Society is all about.’

As he unveiled the latest proposals, Mr Lansley announced that an additional £4.4m would be made available through the Department’s Social Enterprise Investment Fund.

This money will be used to support the successful bids.

The first two waves of Right to Request projects included services that ranged in value from £315,000 to £50m. The number of staff involved in each project varied from five to 1,200.

There are 29 Right to Request schemes running at present.

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