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900 nurses in Virgin community services deal


Community services, including provision of nursing care at eight community hospitals, have been transferred to the private sector in a deal worth £500m.

From 1 April Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Care will be responsible for delivering services including eight community hospitals in North West and South West Surrey, as well as sexual health services and prison healthcare Surrey wide.

However, staff currently working for NHS Surrey’s provider arm, including around 900 nurses, will not move to Virgin Care.

Instead, the 2,500 strong workforce and executive team, which includes health minister Anne Milton’s husband Graham Henderson who is medical director, will move to a social enterprise called VH Doctors in an arrangement designed to allow staff to remain within the NHS pension scheme.

Staff will continue to use the PCT’s provider arm brand Surrey Community Health for the time being.

Virgin Care chief executive Bart Johnson said: “We are delighted to be working with Surrey Community Health and look forward to making a real difference to patient care in Surrey.

“We have a strong track record of providing NHS care that is convenient, accessible and most importantly, delivers improved health outcomes for patients while providing improved value for money for the NHS.”

Virgin Care beat competition from social enterprise Central Surrey Health and Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust to win the contract.

Royal College of Nursing regional director for the south east Patricia Marquis told Nursing Times members were pleased the services had stayed together and they would keep their NHS pensions.

However, she said they were concerned about the added financial pressure of making a profit on top of the 4-5% efficiency savings required by the NHS.

“It’s a concern that provision will be able to continue to the same standard with that level of savings.”

A spokesman for Virgin Care said profit would come through improving efficiency of services.


Readers' comments (48)

  • Steve Williams

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  • tinkerbell

    Now here's something we can all do.

    Get a granny, doesn't have to be your granny, in case you don't have one due to NHS cutbacks in elderly care.

    Sit her at a table with a carton of eggs.

    Now make a small hole in one of the eggs and ask her to suck on it.

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  • tinkerbell

    Steve Williams | 3-Apr-2012 2:12 pm

    Steve, i think i will need to drop by and do a thorough mental state examination on you,

    Either you are on drugs and need to come off them, or if not on drugs need to be put on them.

    I am bringing some ampoules of haldol. It's a cure all.

    Please hold on hanging your nuts out on the letter box for the moment. I think a postcode might be more appropriate way of finding you. I am getting on a plane as we speak. Hang in there.

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  • tinkerbell

    i have no control over Tink, she took her avatar off and went to bed pissed off after the RCN vote.

    There are numerous empty bottles of vodkas lying by her bedside.

    Everytime i try to rouse her to she tells me to piss off.

    You just can't help some pixies.

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  • tinkerbell

    Steve Williams | 3-Apr-2012 2:12 pm
    Very funny - seriously though... we are too old for that sort of shit.

    I can't help it if i'm immature.

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  • tinkerbell

    Oh what now? I'm going to bed. Get outta that bed tink, it's my turn for the long lie down.

    Dear ,

    The government has just announced a plan to spy on us all, to be pushed through “as soon as Parliamentary time allows”. [1] They want to see details of who we call, text and email, and which websites we visit - without any kind of warrant or reason. They want to force phone and internet companies to install special devices to provide all this data on each and every one of us. [2]

    Experts are lining up to condemn this idea as intrusive, expensive and ineffective. [3] But we know that when the Labour government announced similar plans a few years ago, a huge outcry was needed to make them to back down. [4]

    So let's build a massive petition right away, to show David Cameron that British citizens simply won’t put up with the government spying on their every move. Please click here to add your name now:

    A final version of the plan is due to be announced in just one month's time. [5] We need to move fast if we're to get this scrapped before then. A big petition right now could persuade David Cameron to rethink before he commits too deeply. His officials will report the rising number of signatures to him. And they will warn him that he can expect voters to challenge him every step of the way.

    MPs from different political parties are already expressing unease. [6] One prominent Conservative MP, former shadow Home Secretary David Davis, has been in touch with the 38 Degrees office to say: "These plans would give the state huge new powers to snoop on ordinary people. They'd be expensive, unnecessary, and a huge invasion of everybody's privacy. If they are to be stopped, public pressure will be critical – including from 38 Degrees members".

    Add your name to the petition today:

    David Cameron claims this will make us safer. But this is about spying on all of us, not serious criminals. It's already perfectly possible for the government to monitor people suspected of serious crimes, with proper permission and oversight. [7] And serious criminals will inevitably find ways to hide their online identities.

    Most importantly, this isn’t the kind of Britain we want to live in. We shouldn’t respond to criminals by abandoning our principles and scrapping basic civil liberties. We shouldn’t treat every citizen like a potential criminal who needs to be monitored. Help stand up for our right to privacy when we browse the internet or phone our friends - please sign the petition and spread the word now:

    Thanks for using your voice,

    Marie, Cian, David, Hannah, Becky, James and the 38 Degrees

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  • what about hospital phones and patient data. will that be exempt?

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  • what about hospital phones and patient data? will that be exempt?

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  • Steve Williams

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  • tinkerbell

    Steve Williams | 3-Apr-2012 4:00 pm

    Yeah still using that lot. It's called toxic psychiarty. Throw in some clozapine too. Think they tried to call it the 'reductionist, medical model'. Though when i had an axe wielding maniac, in young adults, threatening to kill me in a locked room as a student nurse, on my heels i was not adverse to giving him a bit of shut eye.

    I now work with the elderly. They mostly use Clonazepam and no antipsychotics at all, which is good, except when the more, young, fit aggressive male patients chase you up and down the corridor, try to slam a punch in your face, then i wonder if they may need something stronger. Just until they adjust to being taken out of their homes and never to be returned again. But hey, guess what, under this new regime they will all probably be let out very soon to wander the streets in the 'don't care in the community'. I don't know which is worse to be honest.

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