IRP Press Release below, thanks to Lee Scott and Mike Gapes for drawing to my attention.
18 March 2011
IRP to undertake independent health review in north east London
The IRP, the independent expert on NHS service change, is launching a review to consider whether the proposed changes to local health services in north east London will enable the provision of safe, sustainable and accessible services for the local population.
In February and March 2011 the IRP carried out an initial assessment regarding the Health for north east London proposals for changes to local health services. The Health Secretary, Rt Hon Andrew Lansley MP, accepted the IRP’s advice that a full review should be undertaken.
Dr Peter Barrett, Chair of the IRP, said: “Our focus throughout the review will be the patient and the quality of care. During the course of the review we will gather evidence locally and listen to all interested parties to ensure that the recommendations we make are in the best interests of local people.”
The review will start in April. During the course of the review the IRP will make a number of visits to north east London to see the NHS facilities and meet patients, clinicians and other staff. IRP members will also hold a series of meetings to hear directly from a range of interested parties, including local authority representatives and interest groups.
The IRP will make recommendations to the Health Secretary by 22 July 2011 in relation to the changes. The final decision on changes to services in the area will be made by the Health Secretary.
For further information, contact the IRP press office on 020 7025 7530 or email IRPpressoffice@grayling.com
Notes to editors
The IRP’s review follows a referral to the Health Secretary from London Borough of Redbridge Health Scrutiny Committee; The Outer North East London Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee; London Borough of Barking and Dagenham Council
The full name of the IRP is the Independent Reconfiguration Panel
The IRP was set up in 2003 to provide advice to the Secretary of State for Health on contested proposals for health service change in England
The Local Authority (Overview and Scrutiny Committees Health Scrutiny Functions) Regulations 2002 require NHS organisations to consult their Health Overview and Scrutiny Committees (OSCs) on any proposals for substantial changes to local health services. If a Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee is not satisfied that either a thorough consultation process has taken place or that the proposal meets the needs of the local community, it may refer the proposals to the Secretary of State for Health under regulation 4(7) of the Local Authority (Overview and Scrutiny Committee Health Scrutiny Functions) Regulations 2002
IRP panel members have wide ranging expertise in clinical healthcare, NHS management, public and patient involvement and handling and delivering successful changes in the NHS
Further information, including details of all panel members, is available from www.irpanel.org.uk