Controversial rationing plan abandoned by CCG

Full Story at Health Service Journal, 22 June 2017

Commissioners have abandoned plans to restrict access to hearing aids after a foundation trust warned they could be breaching their legal duties. The CCG have now said it will not carry out its plans to ration hearing aids, down to one per person after Central and North West Foundation trust warned it could be “Incredibly damaging”.

Nicola Smith, chair of Milton Keynes CCG said “We have decided not to limit the availability of the service but will instead improve the way we commission the service to achieve cost effectiveness and quality of service”.

A “clinical priority and best value consultation” began this year in efforts to save £9.7 million. Despite last year’s funding being 3.9% below its assessed share, the budget has increased by 2.4% to £312m for 2017/18.

Instead of this proposal the CCG have opted to stop the prescriptions of gluten free food, and limit podiatry treatment such as, corns and nail conditions. Another recall to think about came from the Royal College of Surgeons after it was decided that gastric band, gastric bypass and sleeve gastrectomy treatments were also no longer going to be routinely funded.

The chief officer for CCG Matthew Webb said they are “a patient focused organisation” inviting anyone with concerns to attend the public meeting.