Dear all,

Local doctors from City and Hackney joined with 38 Degrees members and doing what the government failed to do – and protected our NHS. [1]

This is just the beginning. Can you help make sure that story about local doctors and communities protecting our NHS from privatisation come true in our local newspaper too?

Together, we can get local doctors on Chorley and South Ribble “Clinical Commissioning Group" (CCG) to stand up to behind-the-scenes lobbying from private healthcare companies.

Now is your key window of influence. CCGs are just being formed and deciding how they’ll work. The doctors in charge have a legal duty to listen to local patients about what they want.

If you want your local CCG to be duty-bound in their constitution to look at ethical and moral considerations when considering the future of your local health service – not just the bottom line – then 38 Degrees-funded expert lawyers have the legal language ready to hand over to them.

A few weeks ago City and Hackney CCG became the first to sign up – to the pride and relief of local 38 Degrees members who helped make it happen! You could help make sure our local CCG is next.

What’s a Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)?
CCGs now have huge power and responsibility over our NHS. Every GP surgery must be a member of a CCG. CCGs are groups of GPs that will make the most important decisions about the health service in your area, such as whether to privatise services. They will decide who will provide the services and will enter into contracts with providers. CCGs could choose to enter into contracts with private companies to achieve this.

On the governing body of a CCG, groups will have, in addition to GPs, a least one registered nurse and a doctor who is a secondary care specialist.

CCGs will formally start work in April 2013, but many are up and running in an early form now.

What do you mean by a CCG constitution?
A CCG must have a constitution to guide them in the decisions they make. A CCG constitution is important in shaping the way that the new health plans are implemented. 38 Degrees have worked with lawyers to produce sample wording which a CCG can adopt into their constitution; which satisfies the legal requirements of the Health and Social Care Act, while also committing to protecting our NHS.

The petition is at http://action.38degrees.org.uk/ccg_postcode and has already attracted a large number of sugnators but we need more before we hand it over to our CCG board.
All the best,
Frances
PS I'm a carer for my mother and live at Whittle in Chorley as many of you already know anyway so am as anxious as anyone that we get this right!!