Transfer of specialist children’s community health services

  • 28 January 2020

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Specialist children’s community health services in North Somerset will be run by Sirona care & health from April 2020.

These services support thousands of young people every year, and include community paediatrics, physiotherapy and speech and language therapy; as well as Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

Recently, Weston Area Health NHS Trust gave notice of their intention to hand back the contract for these services. This provided the opportunity to integrate children’s services across Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire, and to improve their resilience and quality.

Sirona – a community interest company which was awarded the adult community health services contract for Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire in September 2019 – already provides the specialist children’s community services in Bristol and South Gloucestershire. A single provider for the whole area will ensure consistent and joined-up services for children, their carers and families.

As the prime provider, Sirona will sub-contract CAMHS to Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust (AWP), which will mirror the arrangement in Bristol and South Gloucestershire where AWP has been delivering CAMHS since being sub-contracted by Sirona in 2016. AWP is well placed to consolidate the skills and experience of staff, and strengthen the service, to the benefit of people in North Somerset.

In the immediate term, we are working together with all our providers to ensure a safe and effective transfer to the new arrangements. We will then be working together to strengthen and stabilise the existing service, with a focus on ensuring equitable provision for children and families wherever they live in BNSSG.

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