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Co-commissioning: risks and benefits

Co-commissioning: risks and benefits

So far this week we’ve spoken about conflicts of interest. Join us today as we’ll be discussing the risks and benefits of co-commissioning

Posted: 5 May 2016

If you’ve missed yesterday’s episode of this week’s feature, click here.

Writer: Ross Ferguson

The expectation is that now they have the power and influence they requested, CCGs will deliver joined up healthcare and much needed local flexibility, resulting in improved patient outcomes.

Primary care commissioning was delivered by 27 area teams, but these have now been integrated into the four regional teams that work closely with CCGs. CCGs are able to access commissioning staff resources to enable them to deliver their responsibilities, and how much of this NHS England resource they call on is dependent on the model of commissioning they have chosen.

Nevertheless, NHSCC identified resources as a possible risk for CCGs in The risks and opportunities for CCGs when co‐commissioning primary care: Things to consider when making your decision, which it produced in conjunction with the RCGP, and this remains a concern, as Dr Amanda Doyle, co-chair NHS Clinical Commissioners and chief clinical officer, NHS Blackpool CCG explained to Primary Care Today: “NHSCC believes that patients would benefit from a local commissioning system that genuinely focuses on people and pathways of care. We, therefore, support the principle of CCG co-commissioning and have seen that realised for primary care (general practice).

“We see this as the most feasible way to join up NHS commissioning at a local level, offering CCGs the levers to connect whole pathways from primary care to an acute setting.

“Many of our members have embraced the opportunity to take on more responsibility, including the fully delegated model. However, their experience shows there are some risks for CCGs – while CCGs are increasing their responsibilities, they are not necessarily seeing a straight transfer of resources from NHS England in order to deliver it, but are instead working with ever-challenging management budgets.”


CCGs have reported that delegated commissioning has:

• Enabled the development of a clearer, more joined-up vision for primary care, aligned to wider CCG plans for improving health services
• Increased clinical leadership and public involvement in primary care commissioning, enabling more local decision making
• Helped to develop relationships with a wide range of local stakeholders
• Moving forward, delegated commissioning offers CCGs further opportunities to improve out-of-hospital services for local people and to support a shift in investment from the acute to primary and community settings.

It will support the development of:

o New models of care – having a single accountable provider for a defined population requires a joined-up local commissioning model, where a single contract can be agreed
o Local incentive schemes that are aligned with CCGs’ strategic intentions
o Commissioning based on the best outcomes for patients
o Improved arrangements for GP practices to work together and changes to the organisation of community-based services

Source: NHS England

Join us tomorrow for the last episode of this week’s feature on co-commissioning as we’ll be discussing accountability, support, and the future of co-commissioning