Sixteen clinical commissioning groups in the West Midlands have abandoned their procurement of an NHS 111 service after failing to attract an acceptable bid.

The tender for a five-year contract to run the non-emergency care telephone service, worth between £45 million and £130 million, was released in December last year.

However, Sandwell and West Birmingham Clinical Commissioning Group confirmed that it has been abandoned.

“The Commissioners did not receive a bid that was acceptable and demonstrated value for money and have therefore exercised their right to abandon the procurement process,” a statement from the CCG says. 

“The service will continue to deliver as it is for the short term, and will be re-procured in the autumn.”

Dr Jonathan Leach, clinical director for NHS 111 said the CCGs ran an incredibly detailed and robust evaluation process, which involved commissioners, clinicians and patients working together. 

“The NHS 111 service has grown from strength to strength in the West Midlands with approximately 100,000 calls per month from our patients,” said Leach. 

“There are future plans to further develop the 111 service, integrating with in and out of hours GP services to provide patients with seamless 24/7 access to care and providing additional care for patients with mental health conditions, plus providing more clinical input at the call centres. 

“All of this work is currently in its initial stages and we hope to be in a position to incorporate the revised specification by the early autumn when we will commence a new procurement process.  In the meantime the service will continue to provide support, help and advice for thousands of patients across the West Midlands.”