Serco Group plc (Serco), the international service company, announces today that it has been selected as preferred bidder for a new contract to provide community health services for NHS Suffolk. The contract, which is expected to be signed in the coming months and is due to start in Autumn 2012, has a total estimated value of £140m to Serco over three years.
Under the contract, Serco and its partners will provide a wide range of community health services which include community nursing, specialist nursing, management and operation of community hospitals, speech and language therapy, specialist children's services and community equipment services. Around 1,000 staff are expected to transfer to the new service with their terms and conditions protected under TUPE regulations.
To deliver the services Serco will work with a range of NHS and third sector partners including: South Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (SEPT), a leading provider of community and mental health services, and Bedford Community Dentistry, a community interest company specialising in the provision of dental services to vulnerable groups.
The partnership approach developed by Serco will create a unique model of integrated service delivery for Suffolk. This will address local health and geographical needs by simplifying services and processes, and utilising new technologies to improve accessibility and address the rural needs of Suffolk patients. The model focuses resources to the frontline, increasing the time clinicians spend with patients and improving the overall patient experience. The approach builds on Serco's experience of working in partnership with the NHS and third sector providers, including its management of Braintree Community Hospital, and the pathology joint venture with two NHS Foundations Trusts in London. Serco also provides out of hours GP care in Cornwall and is a leading provider of occupational health services, supporting the health and wellbeing of over 450,000 employees in the UK.
Dr Paul Watson, chief executive of NHS Suffolk, said: "We have been determined to find the very best organisation to manage these community services in the future, to provide benefit and opportunity to our patients and staff. Serco has been carefully selected and has provided us with a detailed proposal, giving rigorous evidence of its experience as a service provider and its vision and innovative plans for further improving our community services."
Christopher Hyman, Chief Executive of Serco Group, said: "We are delighted to have been chosen by NHS Suffolk to deliver these vital services. By bringing together best in class partners, we believe that we have created an integrated model of service delivery that empowers clinicians, puts the patient at the heart of the service and will make community health in Suffolk a truly exemplary service. This contract adds to our portfolio of services in the rapidly growing global health sector. We look forward to continuing our international track record for improving services for patients and other end users and delivering efficiencies for our customers."