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Thank you for your email regarding the opportunities ahead for Integrated Care Systems, and in particular the role of the NHS within them. I fully share your desires for local communities and citizens to have a central role in the way we develop services and support for people across the North East and North Cumbria.

Your specific views about NHS contracts and conflicts of interest are noted. I would like to reassure you that the NHS must comply with national rules and laws around procurement and competition. We will seek to ensure all decisions made by the ICB are compliant with those rules, whilst robustly managing any real or perceived conflicts of interest.

Our integrated care board exists to significantly improve health outcomes for people who live in our region by working collectively to provide the best health and care for our local communities

The ICB has no plans to delegate any of its functions to bodies or committees that include private healthcare providers.

Our Constitution contains criteria for board membership which include specific safeguards against conflicts of interest regarding involvement in the private healthcare sector.  Members of the ICB and its related committees will be required to publicly declare interests, and they will be recorded and managed in line with the ICB’s conflicts of interest policy. Where and when any interest conflicts with the interests of the ICB, that person will play no part in decision making on that matter.

Healthcare services will be arranged in a transparent way, and decisions around who provides services will be made in the best interests of patients, taxpayers, and the population.

We are keen to hear the views of local citizens on a range of topics related to integrated care.  Please use this link to our website to find out further information about opportunities to get involved and have your say.

Yours sincerely,

Sir Liam Donaldson, Chair, North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board

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