Failure to meet vital targets, including response times and delivery of medicines have been a major issue in contracts run by private companies in the community services sector.
The quality of service provided by Serco was investigated in Suffolk, where it was awarded a £140 million contract in October 2012 to run community services. The company was critcized for failing to meet key response times.
In January 2014, a report from Serco to the council's health scrutiny committee showed that Serco was not hitting three of its key performance indicators in community health response times.
For example, it failed to meet urgent four-hour response targets - for nurses and therapists to reach patients at home 95% of the time (only achieving 89.3% in November 2013). Before Serco took over, the target was reacher 97% of the time.
In September 2015, Serco relinquished the contract and an NHS consortium including Ipswich and West Suffolk Hospital Trusts took over the running of community services.
Healthcare at Home
In 2014, Healthcare at Home was bombarded with complaints over its home delivery of essential prescriptions to NHS patients. The largest issue was its failure to deliver all medications - some life-saving - on time.
Problems emerged after Healthcare at Home switched from using an in-house delivery service to Movianto: an American logistics firm operating throughout Europe. When Movianto's IT system failed many patients were left without deliveries.