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Transforming Cancer and End of Life Care Programme

The commissioners for the Transforming End of Life Care Programme are:

Cannock Chase, North Staffordshire, Stafford and Surrounds and Stoke-on-Trent Clinical Commissioning Groups.

This briefing relates to the procurement process for the end of life care contract.

(There were two separate contracts and procurements, one for cancer care and the other for end of life care. The cancer care contract was not awarded because the bidder did not meet the evaluation criteria and this was announced in April 2017.)

Background and scope of programme

Commissioners from the four CCGs and patients have been working together to understand and address the local challenges in end of life care since the programme launched in 2013. The procurement process to appoint a lead organisation for the end of life care contract commenced in 2014 and patients have helped to develop the outcomes patients and carers want to see in end of life care. Working alongside commissioners, patients have also been involved in meetings and discussions with bidders.

The aim of the procurement has been to appoint a ‘service integrator’ through the selection of a successful bidder who will work with the current providers of care to improve communication and coordination between the different organisations and services that provide end of life care.

The programme has been focused on changing the processes, systems and the pathways that patients near the end of life follow in future, so we get better care, improved patient experience and a dignified pain free death.

Through extensive engagement with patients and carers commissioners have learned that there is excellent clinical care in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, but services are not joined up and there is insufficient co-ordination between professionals and the different providers of care.

Commissioners have engaged patients through a network made up of patients and carers with experience of cancer and end of life care. The patients have worked with commissioners to co-design and develop the outcomes frameworks which outline the results patients want to see from the programme.

Update on end of life care procurement process

Following the completion of the procurement process and evaluation of the end of life bids, the consensus decision of the four CCG Governing Bodies is not to proceed with contract award. This decision has been made after detailed consideration of both the benefits and risks of continuing with the contract.

A changing NHS landscape

The NHS landscape has changed significantly since the start of the procurement process with the introduction of sustainability and transformation partnerships. Together We’re Better is the partnership transforming health and care for the people of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. It is responsible for producing a five year plan and often referred to as a Sustainability and Transformation Plan or STP.

Each of the 44 STPs across England were designed to set out how they would achieve the triple aim of

  1. Improved health and wellbeing,
  2. Transformed quality of care delivery and
  3. Sustainable finances.

The footprint of the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent partnership (Together We’re Better), which was determined by NHS England after the procurement commenced, includes two additional CCGs not included within the procurement.

Together We’re Better, with its Health and Care Transformation Board and associated structures, provides a mechanism for local organisations to work together to address the issues set out in the End of Life Care Programme across the whole of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. It brings the six CCGs together with NHS providers and local authorities across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, as well as Healthwatch. It facilitates a collaborative and joined up approach, and this was not common practice in the NHS when the End of Life Care Programme was launched.

Together We’re Better now provides commissioners, along with all local health and care providers, with a vehicle to deliver improved outcomes for the local population through joint working and shared priorities.

View the Transforming Cancer and End of Life Care Programme Briefing – April 2017