CCGs need to understand when clinical involvement is essential

Clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) and commissioning support services (CSSs) need to understand when clinical involvement is essential and when other members of the commissioning team are better positioned to take over part of the process, according to a report.

Dr Charles Alessi: 'No longer do clinical commissioners have to submit to central imposition.'
Dr Charles Alessi: 'No longer do clinical commissioners have to submit to central imposition.'

Steering or Rowing? Report from a simulation event which tested how CCGs might utilise CSSs outlines the challenges and areas of support these organisations need to consider when working together.

It was produced jointly by NHS Clinical Commissioners - the National Association of Primary Care, NHS Alliance and NHS Confederation working together - and the University of Birmingham’s health services management centre.

Key learning points from the report include:

  • CSSs needing to market their services in ways which are meaningful to CCGs to enable them to make informed choices about where and what support they will access,
  • Role of the wider clinical team in offering expert advice and support to the commissioning process needs to be embraced (including nurses, allied health professionals and acute trust clinicians), and,
  • The customer/supplier relationship between CCGs and CSSs needs to be explored and tested in practice.

Dr Charles Alessi, interim chairman of NHS Clinical Commissioners, said: ‘It is of fundamental importance that CCGs are fully aware locally of their specific needs before deciding upon any commissioning support arrangements.

‘No longer do clinical commissioners have to submit to central imposition. However, it is of equal importance that all parties maintain constructive relationships.’

 

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