North West CATS
North West CATS

Care UK proud to be selected as part of a new NHS Service

February 26 2016

North West Clinical Assessment and Treatment Service (NW CATS), which is part of Care UK, is one of four organisations selected by NHS commissioners in North West England to deliver ear nose and throat, gynaecology, orthopaedics, urology, gastro-intestinal and endoscopy services to NHS patients for the next five years.

A procurement exercise managed by NHS Heywood Middleton and Rochdale Clinical Commissioning Group (HMR CCG) established that the partnership of four providers – the Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, Care UK, BMI Highfield Hospital and GP Care Services Ltd, would provide the best way of delivering an end to end service for patients who are referred by their GPs for investigation or treatment in the specialties.

This new partnership arrangement will make it easier for the partners to have an overview to effectively refer, triage, assess, treat and monitor the patient along agreed, joined-up pathways of care.

This innovative partnership means that the patient’s care will be fully integrated and joined up as they journey from their GP, for their tests and then for their treatment and follow up. A one-stop shop approach could see assessment, diagnosis, patient consultation, direct listing to hospital and a pre-op procedure in one appointment where appropriate.

Simon Wootton, chief operating officer at NHS HMR CCG, said: “We were attracted by the provider partnership bid because of the potential for a seamless patient pathway in these speciality areas. This will operate as a one-stop service where assessment, diagnosis, patient decision aids, direct listing and pre-op where a procedure under general anaesthetic is required will be completed in one place at one time.

“This will mean a better experience for patients and less duplication in the system, which will also mean a better use of resources. We are now entering a mobilisation phase, where we will be working towards the development of a joint governance structure and over-arching management board, with representation from each organisation. Patient referrals will continue as usual during the transition to these new services, however once this partnership is established, we envisage the services will be markedly improved.”

Pat Phillips, operational manager of NW CATS, said: “People in the local area may be familiar with us through our mobile Greater Manchester NHS CATS, which has been running since 2009. In that time we’ve taken care of over 300,000 referrals for NHS patients. 95 per cent of those procedures have been carried out within 28 days and over 96 per cent of patients have rated the service as either very good or excellent, so people can be assured that we know how to run an efficient, much loved service here. The same team will be involved in this new partnership and we’re looking forward to helping patients over the next five years.”