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A local council and a foundation trust in east London have formalised a partnership to develop integrated health and care services in the community.
Newham Council and East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT) are believed to be the first in the country to have formally established a company for the delivery of their project to revamp health and care estates in Newham.
Health and Care Space Newham (HCSN) Ltd is the partnership project launched by the trust and the council with the aim to ‘hold, acquire, develop and lease primary medical, health and care facilities, affordable housing for keyworkers and community assets’, as stated in a governance structure for the project signed by the council on 5 March.
The cumulative value for the HCSN programme is projected to be approximately £200m.
First partnership to redevelop local health and care estate
According to a Newham Council spokesperson, the partnership project has been discussed for around two years with both NHS England and the Department of Health and Social Care and ‘at no point have they been able to point out similar plans or structures anywhere else in the country’.
The spokesperson added that the Local Government Association and London Councils also confirmed that ‘as far as they were concerned, they are the first’.
Newham Council and East London NHS Foundation Trust are equal 50% shareholders of the company, as formalised in a shareholder agreement signed on 28 February.
Newham Health Collaborative, the local GP federation, is expected to join the partnership as a shareholder by acquiring shares from ELFT in 2019/20.
NHS Newham CCG is also a partner but will not be a shareholder.
An ELFT spokesperson told Healthcare Leader that the partnership plans to develop 11 new centres, which will provide around 80% of the health services to patients in Newham.
The new facilities will provide GP services as well as community health, social care, out of hospital and other clinical services.
The first centre is expected to open before the end of 2019, according to ELFT.
As part of the project, the trust and the council also want to build affordable housing for both NHS and social care staff.
HCSN interim programme lead Jonathan MacDonald said: ‘The signing of the shareholder agreement is a major step forward in delivering improved health estate and housing in Newham.
‘The HCSN model is the first of its kind, very innovative and very ambitious. Its real strength is the robustness of the partnership underpinning the vision and with the signing of the shareholder agreement, I am looking forward to putting this vision into reality.’
NHS Newham CCG managing director Selina Douglas said: ‘This venture will see Newham become the first place in the country to integrate primary and community care services while creating new affordable rental homes for health and social care staff.’