General FAQs General FAQs

General frequently asked questions (FAQs) topics in alphabetical order:


Better Health Programme

You may have heard of the term 'STP' which means Sustainability and Transformation Plan. These relate to new planning footprints throughout England. More information about STPs can be found in our STP question below.

The Better Health Programme known as 'BHP' is slightly different. It's currently undertaking public engagement for services across Durham, Darlington and Tees and is helping inform the wider STP. There has been some public concern over the future of the University Hospital of North Tees and Darlington Memorial Hospital.  

Our CCG is involved in discussions and has supported engagement in our areas for BHP as some of our patients use services in the affected areas.

More information about BHP can be found on the Better Health Programme website


Equipment and wheelchairs

1. Who providers community equipment in our area?

Medequip Assistive Technology Limited now deliver the new Integrated Community Equipment Service for North Yorkshire service users and prescribers of community equipment. 

Medequip can be contacted between 8am and 8pm, Monday to Friday and 8am – 2pm on a Saturday, with regards to community equipment needs.  An out of hours service is also available for requests or emergencies in the evening, at weekends and during bank holidays.

2. Who providers wheelchairs for our area? 

Nottingham Rehab Supplies (NRS) will deliver the new Community Wheelchair Service working closely with Blatchford Clinical Services, who will deliver the clinical assessment element of the service. 

NRS can be contacted between 8am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.  Help and assistance is also available out of hours (evenings, weekends and bank holidays).

  • Website
  • Telephone 01904 654 052
  • Telephone (out of hours) 01904 654 052 calls will be redirected to the out of hours service.

3. Is there a way of recycling medical equipment?

Under our new community equipment contract, if a patient no longer requires a piece of equipment they can call Medequip on 01423 226240.  Medequip are contracted to collect equipment (as requested by patients), within 5 working days of the request being made. All collected equipment is reviewed by Medequip and if suitable for recycling, will be repaired/decontaminated and returned to stock for re-issue. 

The wheelchair service is contracted to collect wheelchairs from patients when no longer required (within 5 days of the request being made). Again, similar to equipment, the service provider; NRS will review the item and if suitable for re-use will repair (if required), decontaminate and return to stock so that it can be re-issued for another patient if it is suitable. 

There is also a charity which recycles medical equipment:  


Friarage Hospital

1. I've heard that the Friarage Hospital A&E is closing from 20 March 2017. Is this true?

This is absolutely not the case. We've released a joint statement with the Friarage Hospital service provider, South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust - read the statement here

2. What is happening with urgent and emergency care at the Friarage Hospital?

As part of our long-term commitment to delivering clinically safe and sustainable services from the Friarage Hospital site, we have been working with healthcare partners to redesign the hospital’s urgent and emergency care (UEC) model. Read more about the UEC

3. What is happening with the telephone service at the Friarage?


Gluten free

1. Why did the CCG stop funding gluten free products on prescription for some patients?

We produced some frequently asked questions specifically for gluten free in August 2016:


Health Engagement Network

1. What is the Health Engagement Network?

The network, known as the "HEN" is a membership of patients and local residents across Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby areas. Any resident of these areas can join the network for free. It's a chance to receive information about local health services before the general public and get more involved in the work of the CCG. You can be as little or as much involved as you want.

Members can also get in touch with a representative who sits on our Governing Body - they're call 'HEN Representatives'.

2. How do I join the Health Engagement Network?

If you live in Hambleton, Richmondshire or Whitby areas you can join for free via email, post or via our online form. For more information, visit our Health Engagement Network webpage

3. How can I contact my HEN Representative?

The contact details for each HEN Representative are below:

You can also call the CCG offices on 01609 767600 if you would like to speak with any representative.


Mental health

1. How much does HRW CCG invest in mental health?

The population of Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby areas is deemed by NHS England based on national public health and demographic profiling data, to have a lower ‘need’ for mental health and therefore this is adjusted for in the allocations that the CCG receives.

The technical guidance that NHS England has issued shows that our CCG is the only CCG across the Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) footprint where the need index is lower than ‘1’. This therefore needs to be taken into account when comparing investment.

The table below demonstrates that HRW CCG invests more than three of the four other CCGs in our STP footprint per head of weighted population:


Registered population

Total need weighted population

Need index

Level of investment

£ per head

of weighted population



NHS Darlington CCG






NHS Durham Dales, Easington and Sedgefield CCG






NHS Hartlepool and Stockton-On-Tees CCG






NHS South Tees CCG






NHS Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby CCG







2. Will the CCG meet the Mental Health Investment Standard in 2017/18?

The CCG will meet the Mental Health Investment Standard in 2017/18 and will be working to realign spend into the areas where it is most needed. We will require service efficiency from our mental health contract, as we do of all our provider contracts; however, even with the proposed efficiency saving in 2017/18 our funding level will continue to meet the Standard.


Shuttle bus

1. Why did the CCG stop funding the Shuttle Bus service between the Friarage Hospital and James Cook University Hospital?

We produced some frequently asked questions specifically for the Shuttle Bus service in April 2016:


Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs)

NHS England has asked NHS organisations to work together on improvement plans for their area, called Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs). We are part of an STP called Durham Dales Easington and Sedgefield, Darlington, Teesside, Hambleton, Richmondshire and Whitby. 

Our draft plan is one of 44 such plans being developed across the country and is available to read online here



1. How do you book patient transport?

People who have a medical need can receive transport to and from hospital through non-emergency patient transport services (PTS). Patient transport can usually be booked through a health care professional - usually your GP. They will complete an assessment and either call the transport service for you or offer you their contact details.

For more information about patient transport visit for some helpful details.

2. What other patient transport is available?
Northallerton & District Voluntary Service Association, provide volunteer drivers for people who are unable to access public or private transport. To book your journey call the co-ordinator on 01609 761206 Monday to Friday 9.30 - 11.30am giving as much notice as possible.

Richmondshire Community & Voluntary Action offers a similar service, please contact them on 01642 710190 or by emailing to book transport.

If you need transport In the Whitby and the surrounding area, Whitby and District Community Transport also offer a voluntary car scheme, please call 01947 602982 to book a journey.

For further options and more information about transport please visit