Focus on voluntary sector at our AGM

At our Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, June 12, more than 110 people braved a pretty miserable evening to join us at the Village Hotel, in Farnborough.

Representatives of the voluntary sector were there to welcome them and to talk to them about the work that they do to support local people.

The CCG's Clinical Chair, Dr Peter Bibawy, and Chief Executive, Maggie MacIsaac, reviewed how the CCG had performed during 2018/19, highlighting how the £312 million budget is spent, what successes there were and what challenges we face in our work to ensure local people have access to high-quality health services.

Kathy Atkinson, the CCG's Lay Member for Public and Patient Engagement, and Dr Martin Ballard, our Clinical Lead for Public and Patient Engagement, introduced the focus of the evening - the importance of the voluntary sector to the health and wellbeing of our communities.

Representatives of the main local voluntary services explained what they did and how their work linked in to and supported the CCG, and what their challenges were. Some short films were then shown of projects that received small amounts of funding through the Innovation Conference, demonstrating how much impact relatively little amounts of investment can have. You can see these films here.

Following the end of the meeting guests were invited to stay for a short while and talk to CCG Governing Body members and staff, to ask them questions or raise any concerns with them. Questions were also submitted in writing and they and the answers to them can be found below.

You can find a slide pack of the main presentation here.

Thanks to everyone who supported us throughout 2018/19 and to those who joined us for our event.

Questions/comments from the night:

Question: What localities are currently able to use e-consult?

Response: GP surgeries in Aldershot, Farnborough, Fleet and Yateley, as well as River Wey Medical Centre in Farnham, are able to offer econsult. We are working with a further two Farnham practices who will be able to offer the service in the coming weeks, meaning that all but two North East Hampshire and Farnham GP practices will be able to offer the service.

Question: What is being done to improve the local CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service) offer, especially for young autistic people – where there is currently very little?

Response: Demand for CAMHS services both locally and nationally have seen significant increases over the last few years. Often this means those children presenting with the most complex needs are seen quicker than other children waiting for more routine appointments. We acknowledge that there have been and continue to be concerns with long waiting times across our area and we are working closely with all providers including, third sector and schools to look at how we can improve access to support for young people.

Within the North East Hampshire and Farnham CCG area we work with two service providers for CAMHS provision – Surrey and Borders NHS Foundation Trust for Surrey Children and Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust for Hampshire children. In addition we currently commission Psicon Ltd. to undertake Autism assessments across the CCG area.

Alongside the traditional CAMHS service provision we commission the following services within the CCG area:

  • No Limits – Counselling support
  • Barnardos – Parenting support (working alongside Autism Hampshire)
  • Just Wellbeing Safe Haven in Aldershot

We have been working with partners across the wider system to explore CAMHS provision further. Following a meeting on 30 April between the HIOW CCG Partnership Board; West Hampshire CCG Board and Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust Board, work has commenced to develop proposals for phased investment into children and young people’s mental health and emotional wellbeing services with an aim of reducing the waiting times within CAMHS.

In addition to this, we will be commencing a stakeholder review which will include families and professionals. This will support the decision making process around future models and how we can meet the needs of children and young people in NEHFCCG area and the wider HIOW footprint.


Question: When is the Government going to allow GPs to prescribe medical cannabis?

Response: Medical cannabis is currently available to patients in two very specific groups:

  • children and adults with rare, severe forms of epilepsy
  • adults with vomiting or nausea caused by chemotherapy

Even in these cases it can only be prescribed by specialist hospital doctors and only when other treatments weren't suitable or hadn't helped.

Any questions relating to future policy on prescription of cannabis should be directed to the Government. There is a list of frequently asked questions on this topic here:


Question: I’m into trying to be a lot more into diabetes seminars. I am in the process of having one on the evening of September 3rd at Farnborough Football Club, from 7.30pm.

Response: Congratulations on your commitment to raising community awareness around diabetes. We look forward to seeing how this event goes.


Question: What is the CCG’s strategy for dealing with the ever-growing number of people living with dementia, particularly enabling them to remain independent for as long as possible?

Response: North East Hants and Farnham CCG is committed to achieving the National target for Dementia diagnosis which is currently 66.7% of prevalence for over 65’s. we recognise that Timely diagnosis is the key to ensuring that people are able to be supported for as long as possible in their own homes and communities. As part of this commitment the CCG is working in Partnership with Hampshire and Surrey Local Authorities and has commissioned with them post diagnostic support for people living with Dementia and their carers the Dementia Navigator Service in Farnham and the Dementia Advisory Service in Rushmoor and Hart.

The CCG is currently revising its dementia pathway to ensure that people can be supported for as long as possible in the community by their GP’s supported in partnership with Secondary care services provided by Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation trust.

The CCG is also committed to meeting with and listening to its stakeholders and has developed a stakeholder forum ‘United Communities’ so that we can listen to people’s views on the services we commission and be informed in our future commissioning decisions.

The CCG also encourage people to live Healthy Lifestyles by stopping smoking and reducing Alcohol consumption which are contributory factors in some types of Dementia.


Question: Is there a will to provide a day-long bus service from Farnborough to the Voyager Building? The current No9 timetable shows the last bus returning to Farnborough is 14.30. This procludes evening appointments for those unable to drive.

Response: Transport links to and from Voyager House are a key issue that we have already been exploring closely with our partners at Hampshire County Council and the bus company itself. A representative from Stagecoach will be at the community drop-in event at Voyager House on July 4.

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