CCGs face losing commissioning powers over lack of 'readiness'

Three CCGs could become the first to be stripped of powers to commissioning independently after the NHS Commissioning Board (NHSCB) warned they are not ready to take on statutory duties.

Dame Barbara Hakin: Most CCGs have shown a 'very high level of achievement'
Dame Barbara Hakin: Most CCGs have shown a 'very high level of achievement'

The NHSCB authorised the final wave of 48 CCGs on Thursday. All 211 groups have now been given the green light to become statutory bodies on 1 April.

But 80% of all CCGs will face additional checks after failing to meet in full the 119 criteria for authorisation set out by the NHSCB.

Failures to meet these criteria by three groups – NHS Basildon and Brentwood CCG, NHS Thurrock CCG and NHS Waltham Forest CCG - were deemed so serious that these CCGs may lose some of their commissioning powers. Neighbouring CCGs or the NHSCB may need to step in to help them commission care.

Some of these CCGs had no satisfactory plans in place for working with neighbouring CCGs and did not have a clear integrated commissioning plan with local hospitals.

Later this month the NHSCB will re-assess all CCGs authorised in the first three waves of authorisation, 80% of which were authorised with conditions.

Dame Barbara Hakin, the NHSCB national director of commissioning development, said the majority of CCGs had shown a 'very high level of achievement' and were well-prepared to take on commissioning.

‘This is a tremendous achievement by CCGs which have shown remarkable enthusiasm for and commitment to bringing the benefits of clinical commissioning to their local communities and are now on the threshold of taking up their new role.'

She added: ‘CCGs have made fantastic progress in a very short time. It has always been clear that some of the new organisations would be at different stages to others, often dependent on their previous commissioning activities. CCGs will continue to receive this focused support from the NHSCB and we are confident that they will be able to further develop their capabilities within the coming months.’

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