CCGs in eight English cities describe their innovations in tackling health challenges

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NHS clinical commissioners in eight English cities are calling for more support from national NHS bodies to speed up efforts to transform people’s healthcare and wellbeing. They want greater flexibility when it comes to contracting services and sharing data so they can be better informed.

The call came in a report launched this week by the NHS Clinical Commissioners’ Core Cities Network at a conference in London.

The 2015 NHS Atlas of Variation in Healthcare – published

england map The latest NHS Atlas of Variation in Healthcare has just been published, with 102 maps detailing widespread variation in the quality, cost, activity and health outcome of healthcare in the English NHS. The indicators focus on a variety of services.

The Atlas is a collaboration with NHS England, Public Health England and NHS Right Care and can be accessed here
(Previous versions of the atlas are also available online.)

Recently highlighted in the media, information about the Atlas and its themes can be found here

You can read the recent Public Health England Press Release about the atlas here
The NHS Confederation also commented (see link)  on the usefulness of the Atlas which provides intelligence and highlights variations in care across regions.

Free event: Adopting innovation in the NHS: working in partnership

A free event, run in partnership with the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI)  Adopting innovation in the NHS: working in partnership is taking place on Wednesday, 27 February 2013 in London.  This event has been designed to help you understand the process of adopting innovation, how to engage colleagues and other stakeholders and cross-agency involvement.

The speakers include:

  • Helen Bevan, Chief of Service Transformation at the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement
  • Kathy McLean, Medical Director of the Provider Development Agency
  • Stephen Whitehead, Chief Executive, ABPI

Four case studies that represent leading-edge work will be used to show innovation in practice. The case studies will focus on how partnerships can accelerate innovation and stimulate radical change, and will give you practical information on how to transfer these approaches to your workplace.

  • A new paradigm for admissions avoidance  Aintree University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust working in partnership with Baxter Healthcare Ltd
  • Enabling patients to manage long term conditions at home – a whole pathway approach    Derby Hospitals NHS Trust, University Hospital of North Staffordshire and The Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust working in partnership with Baxter Healthcare Ltd 
  • Reaching ‘at risk’ and ‘hard to access’ populations through innovative media channels     Chelsea and Westminster Hospital Foundation Trust working in partnership with Bristol-Myers Squibb Ltd.
  • New ways of experienced led commissioning, placing the patient at the centre of the commissioning process   Boehringer Ingelheim Ltd.  

When and where:    Wednesday 27 February 2013 at the Wellcome Collection Conference Centre, London.


Website to watch: The NHS Commissioning Board (NHS CB)

The NHS Commissioning Board (NHS CB), plays a key role in the Government’s vision to modernise the health service with the key aim of securing the best possible health outcomes for patients by prioritising them in every decision it makes.

Formally established as an independent body, at arm’s length to the Government, on 1 October 2012, it will carry forward the preparatory work begun as the NHS Commissioning Board Authority while taking on initial statutory responsibilities.  The most notable of these responsibilities being the authorisation of clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) which are the drivers of the new, clinically-led commissioning system introduced by the Health and Social Care Act.

The NHS Commissioning Board will take up its full statutory duties and responsibilities on 1 April 2013.”

Read more about the NHS CB.  See their website at for news, information, puiblications, events, resources including blogs and RSS feeds for subscription.

Map of Medicine | Leeds Clinical Commissioning groups launch MSK care maps

Map of Medicine | Leeds Clinical Commissioning groups launch MSK care mapsThe three newly-formed clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in Leeds have launched an ambitious project to improve the quality of referrals by adding local pathways to the Map of Medicine. Leeds West CCG, Leeds North CCG, and Leeds South and East CCG, with a combined patient population of over 810,000 spread over 113 GP practices, aim to ensure all GPs use the care maps when making musculoskeletal referrals.

Having agreed the pathways for six musculoskeletal topics locally, the Leeds project team used Map Transform, a package of care maps and services, to establish their pathways on the Leeds ‘view’. This package supports clinically-led service improvement, and enables cross-service communication via easy online access to the agreed local pathways for all stakeholders. The topics Leeds chose were:

  • Hip pain
  • Hand/wrist pain
  • Spinal pain
  • Knee pain
  • Foot and ankle pain
  • Shoulder pain

The care maps display referral criteria at specific points within the pathways, with information that guides the user to the appropriate local referral form. The overarching aim of these care maps is to standardise and improve the quality of referrals from primary care to community MSK and secondary services. While a triage service for all MSK referrals was in place, and effective at ensuring good conversion rates for surgery following onward referral to secondary care, it was felt that GPs could perform some of the functions of triage, with the patient pathway being streamlined. The care maps are intended to expand GPs’ knowledge of MSK conditions, and also promote patient self- management.

read more via Map of Medicine | Leeds Clinical Commissioning groups launch MSK care maps.

AQuA Latest Edition | Issue 20 July 2012

Inside this edition you will find:

• AQuA Holds Its Second Member Annual General Meeting

• AQuA At The NHS Confederation Event 2012

• AQuA & Manchester Mental Health & Social Care Trust Host Targeted Improvement Workshop In Manchester

• Mental Health AQuA Improvement Methodologies Course Is Launched

• Avoiding Unnecessary Hospital Admissions And Inappropriate A&E Attendances Of Children & Young People With Long Term Conditions

• National Shared Decision Making WebEx’s

• Health Foundation Opens Second Round Of Improvement Science Fellowships

• Reducing Mortality Programme

• IHI Open School Licences

• A New Role For Finance In Quality Improvement: Cohort 2

• Focus On Commissioning – New Programme

via AQuA.

Guide for commissioners on end of life care for adults

National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). This guide aims to support commissioners in designing high quality, evidence-based services to improve outcomes for patients and to help the NHS make better use of resources. It also includes an end of life care commissioning and benchmarking tool to help users determine the level of service that might be needed locally and to help cost and identify potential savings associated with commissioning end of life care services.

Resource Watch: Commissioning and Quality Improvement

A one stop shop for everything commissioning managers and teams might require can be found at

The latest information alerting readers to hot topics like GP consortia development, public health intelligence, outcomes based contracts and all relevant papers will shortly be included on our Health Management page.