Local solutions to national challenges: CCGs set out what they need to deliver more for their patients

NHSCC five asksOne year into the Five Year Forward View we are calling for crucial changes that must be made to support CCGs fulfil the vision it sets out.

Since they were set up three years ago, CCGs have made an excellent start in providing better quality, more appropriate and more cost-effective care. They have proved that they can operate within their budgets and manage their finances to support other parts of the system, but increasingly they find themselves struggling with an ever-growing bureaucracy, a financial system that does not meet their needs and an oppressive monitoring and reporting process, often insensitive to the local context.

Local solutions to national challenges, puts forward a series of key “asks” to policy-makers, regulators and the government aimed at giving CCGs the freedoms and flexibilities they need to transform healthcare for their local populations and concentrate on the big issues: sickness prevention, health inequality and healthcare targeted to the needs of the patient.

Amanda Doyle 1 May 2014Dr Amanda Doyle, NHSCC Co-chair and Chief Clinical Officer of NHS Blackpool CCG said:

“No one underestimates the challenge of transforming our health services but CCGs are more than capable of undertaking this task. To do so however we must be allowed to focus on our role of transforming health services for our local people, rather than being diverted by narrow short-term priorities imposed from the centre, as is currently the case.

“CCGs as local clinical leaders need the support and resources to allow them to develop the commissioning role as it becomes increasingly diverse and sophisticated”

Dr Steve KellDr Steve Kell, NHSCC Co-chair and Chair of NHS Bassetlaw CCG went on to say:

“CCGs are fully committed to the aims of the Five Year Forward View but are concerned that one year in there is a real risk we are heading off its course and in the wrong direction. The changes we are calling for today set out how we can get back on track. This is particularly timely, with the recent news that NHS trusts in England have reported a deficit of £930m in the first three months of this financial year, once again highlighting that the system is no longer sustainable and the time for quick fixes is past.

“We need the full commitment of national government and NHS England to an approach that allows all parts of the NHS to work together to find the local solutions that work for them for the benefit of their patients and local populations.”

Local solutions to national challenges has been developed with our members and details a number of asks from national bodies which include:

  • Allowing CCGs to focus on the long term view, with planning for at least the next five years rather than annually, and a multi-year financial settlement to support this
  • A new single outcomes framework for health, public health and social care which will allow CCGs to focus on tackling long term health issues
  • A more mature partnership with national bodies, with an end to micromanagement, a more proportionate assurance regime and support when CCGs have to make tough decisions
  • Real recognition that diverse geographies need diverse local solutions and that a one size fits all model will not work – while national government may set out the principles they should not dictate policy, leaving CCGs to choose the best healthcare for their local populations
  • Reform of the current tariff system of payment that which they feel favours hospital care over sickness prevention

You can read the full report here.

22 October 2015