Report highlights excellence in commissioning diabetes care

By Editor
10th May 2017
Commissioning, Good practice

A paper highlighting excellence in commissioning diabetes care has been released by a national body representing clinical commissioning groups.

The NHS Clinical Commissioners’ report was based on a roundtable event held in March 2017 and subsequent conversations with commissioners working at other clinical commissioning groups (CCGs).

The document contains top tips on commissioning diabetes services which includes involving patients in their own care, whether through supported self-management or through engagement in the design of services.

The report said: “There are commissioners who are leading the way here, and this publication showcases them. It is our hope that sharing best practice will help other CCGs improve care for their population with diabetes.

“But realistically we know they will face challenges along the way – national obstacles they need to negotiate. That’s why this paper also includes actions we believe national bodies should take to assist commissioners in this vital area.”

Local healthcare services

Adrian Hayter, clinical chair of Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead CCG and diabetes lead on the NHS Clinical Commissioners board, said: “It’s really important that is not neglected. It is a fundamental thing we need to take into account.”

In his area, they are rolling out the HealthMakers concept, originally conceived by Bracknell and Ascot CCG, which enables local people with long-term conditions to help improve their own health as well as local healthcare services.

Adrian added: “It is empowering them to be patient leaders across a wide range of long-term conditions, from running education sessions to leading the conversations in the CCGs about diabetes commissioning.”

Another suggestion in the report was to use data to illustrate the issue, and to encourage action.

Nithya Nanda, diabetes GP lead for Slough CCG, said diabetes outcomes versus expenditure (DOVE) data showing the area had poor outcomes was enormously helpful “in selling the story both to local GPs and to the senior leadership” that change was needed.

Too often, however, commissioners told us they had made progress despite many challenges. It is clear that removing some of these obstacles would enable more CCGs to provide better care for people with diabetes

In Bradford, data on cardiovascular disease mortality in the under-75s showed the CCG was one of the worst in the country.

Strong leadership, diabetes champions working across organisational divides and potential partnerships with the pharmaceutical industry are among the other recommendations to boost diabetes care in commissioning.

The report authors say the roundtable and conversations which informed it have all “demonstrated that there are numerous examples of CCGs commissioning excellent diabetes services.

“Too often, however, commissioners told us they had made progress despite many challenges. It is clear that removing some of these obstacles would enable more CCGs to provide better care for people with diabetes”.

National bodies are now being called upon to work with CCGs to identify top-priority patient outcome measures, promote new contracting mechanisms which better reflect population-based care and establish clearer rules of engagement on collaborations between pharmaceutical companies and CCGs.

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