First wave of GP consortia named

The first GP consortia were announced on Wednesday by Health Secretary Andrew Lansley. These are groups of GP practices that have decided to work together to gradually take on responsibility for commissioning local health services.

The list of 52 GP consortia, labelled pathfinders by government, includes the following in the North West:

Cumbria Senate

  • Geographical area: Cumbria
  • Number of practices: 86
  • Population size: 517,000

Salford PBC Consortium

  • Geographical area: Salford
  • Number of practices: 55
  • Population size: 240,000

Stockport Managed Care

  • Geographical area: Stockport
  • Number of practices: 53
  • Population size: 298,234

Manchester (Three consortia: North, Central and South)

  • Geographical area: Manchester
  • Number of practices: 105
  • Population size: 547,355

West Cheshire Health Consortium

  • Geographical area: Western Cheshire
  • Number of practices: 38
  • Population size: 260,000

Wirral GP Commissioning Consortium

  • Geographical area: Part of the Wirral
  • Number of practices: 27
  • Population size: 128,729

Eastern Cheshire Commissioning Consortium (ECCC)

  • Geographical area: East Cheshire
  • Number of practices: 22
  • Population size: 201,252

Trafford Commissioning Consortium (TCC)

  • Geographical area: Trafford
  • Number of practices: 37
  • Population size: 221,500

Fleetwood Community Commissioning Group

  • Geographical area: Fleetwood, North Lancashire
  • Number of practices: 3
  • Population size: 25,000

Wirral NHS Alliance

  • Geographical area: Wirral
  • Number of practices: 6
  • Population size: 32,000

The government said there will be a rolling programme of pathfinder approvals over the coming weeks and months. The programme will enable as many consortia as possible to proceed to 'shadow' running in 2011/12. Consortia will begin to take on statutory responsibilities in 2012/13.

Pathfinders are expected to raise finance to commission new health centres to be built to consolidate existing practices into larger premises.

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