CCG budgets

CCG budgets tightening under rapidly increasing pressures, NHSCC warns

NHS Clinical Commissioners have launched an infographic The shrinking value of the commissioning pound.  It highlights how rising inflation, along with a growing population, means that while on paper the funds allocated to CCGs are going up, in reality the value of the CCG pound is shrinking.  

shrink

Image source: http://www.nhscc.org

Hulll CCG pools entire budget with council in £600m fund

A Yorkshire clinical commissioning group is aligning its entire budget with a local authority to create a strategic commissioning fund of £600m | HSJ

bank-20619_960_720.jpg

  • Hull CCG to align entire £400m budget with local authority
  • CCG chief officer joins Hull City Council’s corporate management team
  • Committee in common will approve decisions by new integrated commissioning board

Read the full article here

The clinical commissioning group allocation process

How it works: The clinical commissioning group allocation process | Sarah Bence & Duncan Watson | Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA)

business-17965_1920This briefing, part of the HFMA’s How it works series, looks at the process of allocating money from NHS England to clinical commissioning groups (CCGs). The briefing explains how NHS England, with the support of the Advisory Committee on Resource Allocation, calculates the relative need for healthcare funding of each CCG area. Following this the available funding for CCGs is split based on this calculation and on the historic level of funding of the CCG.  This allocation is split into three main sums: the core allocation used for most of the healthcare commissioning that the CCG undertakes; an amount set aside for the better care fund to be put into a pooled budget with the local authorities in the CCG area; and an amount for the running costs of the CCG.

The briefing sets out the circumstances under which there may be additional in-year changes to the allocation, or further non-recurrent funding added to the allocation, for example, for funding transformation projects.

Please note, the full version of this briefing is only available to HFMA members.

Commissioning of specialist palliative care services in England

Lancaster H. et al. BMJ Supportive & Palliative Care | Published Online: 28 February 2017

business-17610_960_720.jpg

Objectives: Some failures in end-of-life care have been attributed to inconsistent provision of palliative care across England. We aimed to explore the variation in commissioning of services by Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) using a data collection exercise.

Methods: We sent a Freedom of Information request in the form of an open questionnaire to all 209 CCGs in England to assess their commissioning of palliative and end-of-life care services, mainly focused on the provision of specialist palliative care services.

Results: 29 CCGs provided information about the number of patients with some form of palliative care needs in their population. For specialist palliative care services, CCGs allocated budgets ranging from £51.83 to £2329.19 per patient per annum. 163 CCGs (77.90%) currently commission 7-day admission to their specialist palliative care beds. 82.84% of CCGs commission 7-day specialist palliative care services in patients’ own homes and out-of-hours services rely heavily on hospice provision. 64 CCGs (31.37%) commission pain control teams, the majority of whom only operate in regular working hours. 68.14% of CCGs reported commissioning palliative care education of any sort for healthcare professionals and 44.85% of CCGs had no plans to update or review their palliative care services.

Conclusions: The most important finding from this exercise is that the information CCGs hold about their population and services is not standardised. However, information based on data that are more objective, for example, population and total budget for palliative care, demonstrate wide variations in commissioning.

Read the full article here

Nearly 200 GP practices closed in 2016 alone NHS data suggest

Up to 181 GP practices closed in the 12 months to January 2017, official data show | GP Online

6015396482_9ab293f906_z

Image source: Nick Papakyriazis – Flickr // CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Data on GP practice populations released by NHS Digital this month list just 7,532 GP practices – down 181 from the total a year earlier in January 2016.

Part of the drop in GP practice numbers in the NHS Digital data is likely to be driven by mergers, which could mean that some of the practice locations no longer listed in official figures remain open, but under the wing of a larger group.

However, BMA leaders have warned that closures are at ‘record levels’ and the latest figures suggest that the trend is not slowing down as GPs wait for government pledges of investment through the GP Forward View to take effect.

Read the full news story here

Faulty by design: The state of public-service commissioning

How public services are commissioned underpins their success in healthcare, criminal justice, employment services and beyond | Reform

reform-com

Image source: Reform

reform-com-1

Image source: Reform

This report reveals that commissioning bodies are not delivering value for money in three key areas.

  • Commissioners are failing to focus on outcomes that matter to service users.
  • Fragmented commissioning bodies stand in the way of integrated services that meet users’ needs most effectively.
  • Devolution of commissioning to local areas is not happening in practice, with a one-size-fits all approach creating a postcode lottery across in healthcare, welfare-to-work and probation services.

Watch the interview about the report below:

Read the full report overview here

Read the full report here

Children’s Mental Health Funding Not Going Where it Should

YoungMinds analysis reveals that many local health bodies are diverting some of the new funding received for children’s mental health services to other priorities.

In 2015, the government pledged an extra £1.4 billion over five years to “transform” Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS). Research undertaken by YoungMinds into the responses of 199 Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) from Freedom of Information requests has revealed that:

  • Fewer than half of the CCGs who responded were able to provide full information about their CAMHS budgets. If CAMHS services are to improve, there needs to be far greater accountability about where money is being spent.
  • In the first year of extra funding (2015-16), only 36% of CCGs who responded increased their CAMHS spend to reflect their additional government funds. Nearly two-thirds (64%) of CCGs used some or all of the extra money to backfill cuts or to spend on other priorities.
  • In the second year of extra funding (2016-17), only half of CCGs (50%) who responded increased their CAMHS spend to reflect their additional government funds. The other half (50%) are using some or all of the extra money for other priorities.

Read the full news story here