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Significant scope for better diabetes care commissioning

Significant scope for better diabetes care commissioning

Commissioning better NHS care for people with diabetes would benefit patients and taxpayers, delegates heard at a Primary Care Commissioning (PCC) event

Posted: 28 April 2016

The conference, which focused on “outcomes-based” approaches to buying diabetes care, comes in the wake of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) new report estimating that one in every 11 now has the chronic condition.

PCC chief executive, Helen Northall, said: “Diabetes is an excellent area for outcomes based commissioning as it is well-defined and it is a national priority.

“With diabetes already counting for around 10 per cent of the NHS budget and the numbers affected set to rise significantly, getting better value for taxpayers is a key challenge.”

Existing unwarranted variations in outcomes suggest that services could be improved in most parts of England “without any additional investment” according to Robert Ferris-Rogers, a delivery partner with NHS Right Care.

He said: “Spend alone does not equate to better outcomes in diabetes. Only 13 out of the 211 CCGs were not outliers in at least one of the five diabetes outcomes indicators.

“Put in another way, that means 198 CCGs and their providers have significant improvement opportunities in at least one of the five areas for diabetes.”
Ferris-Rogers also urged commissioners and providers to secure clinical leadership and engagement to transform services, and to make the case for change by using available data.

He suggested some health economies hide behind demographic factors such as deprivation and ethnicity.

Dr Rupert Dunbar-Rees, chief executive of outcomes data specialists Outcomes Based Healthcare, said commissioners and providers need to choose the “right blend of quality indicators” around structure, process and outcomes.

“Indicators for structure are easy to measure but they do not always lead to the process occurring. Outcomes are meaningful to individuals and are important clinically and financially.”

Mr Ferris-Rogers was speaking at an event about outcomes-based care in Birmingham organised by PCC.