Our Trust management have decided to convert the Renal Unit, currently in the main hospital building, into a Ward area. We have no details at this early stage but it looks like a private company will provide the new dialysis facility somewhere in the region.
One company has offered to provide a ‘managed service’ with the prospect of a very appealing VAT saving to the Trust. The company will provide & maintain the building, facilities & equipment. Basically providing everything except the nursing & medical staff.
As the package includes technical support from the company, we are concerned about our future.
Does anyone have any experience of this type of privatisation?
This is something that will challenge all ART members in these financially challenging times. I thnk this is something that we should be discussing with a view to presentation meaningfull support by way of rational an argument to our members.
The tools we have available on the ART website are the Scope of Practice documents along with the various guidelines and International Standards documents that will place the provision of like-for-like services from commercially focussed companies a scale factor up from using in-house NHS services. We should be promoting the greater effectiveness of meeting quality guidelines though this will mean increasing the way we adhere to those guidelines so that any financial comparison becomes irrelevant.
Times will indeed be challenging for ART members and Gerry is quite right that this does warrant further discussion. The ART committee will take this forward and look at how we can support our members.
I have recently been privatised myself, though under slightly different circumstances.
Our Trust which is vastly overspend asked Price Waterhouse Cooper to come up with a 'cunning plan'. Their solution was for our Trust to form of Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) that is wholly owned by the Trust. Assets such as equipment, and buildings and the associated maintenance staff (not medical and nursing) along with the procurement department where transferred to this new company. We were TUPE'd and kept our NHS pension under what is called Direction Status. This LLP then sells the service back to the Trust who then reclaims the VAT. Apart form answering to different manager not much has changed in the last four months.
Further to my previous comment in this thread I can confirm that the ART EC are looking to arrange a conference call in the next week or so to discuss this very subject. We will keep you posted on progress.