North Staffordshire, Stoke-on-Trent, Stafford and Surrounds and Cannock Chase Clinical Commissioning Groups are working with NHS England Specialised Commissioning, Staffordshire County Council, Stoke-on-Trent City Council and Macmillan Cancer Support to improve cancer and end of life care through the Transforming Cancer and End of Life Care Programme.
Commissioners and patients have been working together in a procurement process to appoint two lead organisations, one for cancer care and the other for end of life care.
The aim of the procurement from the outset has been to appoint two ‘service integrators’ 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.
The programme has been focused on changing the processes, systems and the pathways that patients with cancer or near the end of life follow in future, so we get better clinical outcomes; full recovery or longer life expectancy; improved patient experience; better life quality or 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 or 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 cancer procurement process
Andrew Donald, Senior Responsible Officer for the programme and Chief Officer (Cannock Chase, South East Staffordshire & Seisdon Peninsula and Stafford & Surrounds CCGs) said:
Commissioners have completed the cancer procurement and following evaluation of the bid it has not been possible to award the contract because the bidder did not meet the required evaluation criteria. We would like to thank Together, a public-private partnership, for taking part in the process.
We are committed to delivering the outcomes of the programme and work is now underway to develop a revised plan to deliver the objectives through the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Sustainability and Transformation Plan and West Midlands Cancer Alliance.
There has been a significant amount of learning through the work of the programme and this will be utilised in the revised plan to deliver the objectives of the programme.
A changing NHS landscape
The NHS landscape has changed significantly since the programme launched in 2013, and now there is much more of a focus on collaborative working to achieve better care and outcomes for patients.
The opportunities for working together through the STP and West Midlands Cancer Alliance have presented commissioners in the programme with an opportunity to deliver the outcomes patients want to see across a bigger geographical area.
Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Sustainability and Transformation Plan
NHS organisations and local authorities have come together in 44 areas covering all of England to develop proposals and make improvements to health and care. These proposals, called Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs), are place-based and built around the needs of the local population. The STPs will support the implementation of NHS England’s Five Year Forward View and make sure there is continued improvement in local services and health outcomes for people.
The Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent STP brings the six CCGs together with NHS providers and local authorities across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. All the organisations are working together and developing joint plans to improve patient care and the local system.
The STP is about a collaborative and joined up approach, and this was not common practice in the NHS when the programme was launched. The STP provides commissioners with a vehicle to deliver the outcomes framework through joint working and shared priorities across the local health and care providers.
West Midlands Cancer Alliance
Cancer Alliances are being set up across England to drive the changes needed across the country to achieve the NHS’s Independent Cancer Taskforce’s vision for:
The West Midlands Alliance is made up of six STPs, including the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent STP. The alliances bring together local clinical and managerial leaders from providers and commissioners who represent the whole cancer pathway. This is a really positive opportunity to collaborate with organisations across the region and deliver the aims of the programme.
Our mission is to improve patients’ experience of cancer and end of life care services by coordinating each step of the patient journey.