Mitie Group plc has been awarded a £15 million contract by Greater Manchester Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd and the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership. The pioneering three-year contract comes with the option to extend for two further one-year periods.
For the first time in the UK, police and health chiefs have joined forces to provide an integrated healthcare, liaison and diversion service in custody suites, at Courts of Law and in the local community.
Mitie Care & Custody Health will co-ordinate the new Integrated Healthcare, Liaison and Diversion Partnership, bringing together three partner organisations to provide integrated services, including the Five Boroughs Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, the Cheshire and Greater Manchester Community Rehabilitation Company and the North and East London Commissioning Support Unit.
This means people of all ages who commit (or are suspected of committing) a crime will be health assessed while in custody and those with mental health issues, learning disabilities, substance misuse or other vulnerabilities will be supported to access the appropriate services they need. The service will also operate in courts.
Tony Lloyd explained: “If we are to effectively reduce re-offending and protect the vulnerable we need to think innovatively about how we commission services. People who find themselves in a police cell often have underlying health issues that may cause them to offend, such as mental ill-health or substance abuse, so it’s common sense to bring policing and healthcare together. I’m pleased that we have appointed the Mitie partnership to deliver this vital service, which will provide a lifeline for thousands of vulnerable people, offering help and support to those who may have previously fallen through the net.”
Forward-thinking partnership forged
Seb Stewart, managing director at Mitie’s Care & Custody Health business, commented: “We’re delighted to be working with Greater Manchester health and justice partners and to have brought together a credible, forward-thinking partnership of organisations to deliver fully-integrated, innovative services to the police, the courts and the community of Greater Manchester, in turn supporting better health outcomes for patients and contributing towards a reduction in re-offending. Strategically, this is a very significant contract for Mitie as we expand our presence in the custodial and healthcare services market. We look forward to building a strong working partnership with Greater Manchester over the coming years.”
Lord Peter Smith, chair of the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Strategic Partnership Board, said: “This is an excellent example of bringing public service partners together as a new way of commissioning in Greater Manchester in tune with our wider ambition of working better together to deliver enhanced results. By joining things up in this way, we will not just assist individuals, but also our wider communities by helping to reduce re-offending.”
Mitie’s Care & Custody Health business provides forensic, medical and Sexual Assault Referral Centre examination services to a number of police forces right across the UK.