Councillor Izzi Seccombe, chairman of the Local Government Association Wellbeing Board, shares her view on where next for commissioning as part of Provider Voices – a new publication series from NHS Providers.
Local government has been actively commissioning services for decades and sees commissioning as a continuous ongoing process, which starts with an assessment of needs, followed by an identification of priorities, market and demand management, contract development and procurement. The NHS sometimes focuses narrowly on procurement, and would benefit from adopting a whole-cycle approach.
Commissioning is far wider than contracting and procurement. Assessing the quality and outcomes of commissioned services is vital to ensure value for public money and to inform future commissioning decisions.
Local government is moving away from commissioning activities or input towards commissioning for outcomes. This approach is person-centred and doesn’t just treat individual health conditions. Its focus is on what matters to the individual: what makes their life worthwhile, and what they want to get out of their life.
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