Stuart Drummond, mayor of Hartlepool, insists the town will not miss out on its fair share of funding for healthcare under the NHS reforms.
Local residents raised concerns that local services would be cut after Hartlepool was grouped with Stockton-on-Tees to form a clinical commissioning group as part of the reforms.
Speaking at a meeting to discuss local priorities, Mr Drummond said the CCG is “fighting for our fair share, if not more”.
It is anticipated that NHS Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees Clinical Commissioning Group will be allocated a budget of around £360m. Budgets, to be confirmed in 2013-14, will be decided on the size of population and levels of local deprivation.
Alongside mayoral duties for Hartlepool, Mr Drummond is also the chair of the region’s shadow health and wellbeing board. He insists that the area’s people are “still masters of our own destiny” and said “we have a good track record of getting more funding than you would expect for an area of our size.”
Ali Wilson, Director of Commissioning and System Development at NHS Tees, said the health reforms would benefit local patients. “It is about identifying what the key priorities are,” she said.
“If in a year there is a big need to invest more in Hartlepool or a certain ward in Hartlepool, there is nothing to stop us.”
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