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PCC Weekly Bulletin


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Primary Care Commissioning Development programme

The Primary Care Commissioning Development programme provides the information and support CCGs need to commission primary care effectively. The programme will support you to manage commissioning of primary medical care contracts, including premises, finance and QOF, and to understand and influence other primary care contracts.

Subscribing CCGs can access our event programme and our team of national experts to answer questions related to primary care contracting and commissioning. Our events, online helpdesks and named advisers have supported commissioners for over 12 years to manage risks, avoid legal fees and deliver efficiencies.

For further information contact (north, Midlands and east), (London and south) or visit our website for further information and pricing details.


Vanguard powers Isle of Wight change programme

Health commissioners and their partners on the Isle of Wight are using vanguard status to “turbo boost” an existing whole-system change programme.


NAPC calls for test site for the Primary Care Home

The National Association of Primary Care is seeking expressions of interest from potential test sites for its “primary care home” model, a version of the multispecialty community provider model outlined in the Five Year Forward View. The concept, described by PCC chair and former national director of primary care David Colin-Thomé in a 2011 paper, has been adopted by NAPC and was endorsed by Simon Stevens at the association’s national conference in October. The deadline for expressions of interest is 5pm on Wednesday 25 November. Full details are on the NAPC website.


Reliable journey planning for federations

GP collaboratives are developing in a number of ways, some growing organically, others being pressed into service to meet the needs of national programmes or local commissioning plans.

Our support for federations recognises that they are at different stages in their development journeys – or starting from different places – with a range of ambitions about the route they wish to take and the type of organisation they want to end up with, from loose federal arrangements that preserve the autonomy of member practices to formal corporate structures.

Find out more about how PCC can support your organisation, whether you are part of an existing federation or supporting a new collaboration.


Choice in NHS adult hearing services: resources for commissioners

Monitor has published key principles of choice in adult hearing services following its research project into how choice is working for patients in these services.

These resources may also be useful for NHS commissioners looking at choice in relation to other services.


Earlier cancer diagnosis in England

The proportion of cancers diagnosed as an emergency at hospital has decreased, according to Public Health England. At the same time, the proportion of cancers diagnosed through urgent GP referral with a suspicion of cancer has increased.

PHE has published the data, which covers more than 2m patients diagnosed with cancer from 2006 to 2013. This publicly available, big data project tells us how people are diagnosed, with associated survival rates, for 56 different cancer sites and is a vital tool to help improve early diagnosis.


Training opportunity for dental professionals

PCC is offering an opportunity to clinicians interested in training dental care professionals in the provision of appropriate preventive advice and the application of topical fluoride varnish. This one day course is delivered by experienced professionals in the dental field and successful completion of the course allows clinicians to train dental nurses in their own practice as well as being able to offer the training to other dental practices. Further information can be found here

Place are still available on the next course which will be held in London on 25 November.


Quick guide: best use of unscheduled dental care services

This guide is designed to provide practical information for dental providers and commissioners on what they can do to improve unscheduled dental care for patients over the winter period and beyond. Throughout this document you will find practical tips, case studies and links to useful resources.


Care Design 2016

NHS England has launched Care Design 2016 with NHS Improving Quality, Nuffield Trust and a growing community of people who want to share insight, ideas and experience to help build a set of redesign principles. The first stage is the discussion of ten draft redesign principles that have been compiled with the guidance of an expert group. To contribute visit


The confident leader: primary care providers

PCC has added new dates in its learning and development programme for new and aspiring leaders of provider organisations, such as GP federations. The nine half-day sessions help leaders to acquire the knowledge they need, including understanding the changing NHS landscape, the legal and governance requirements of federations and other new organisations, and the skills required to build effective teams and collaborate with others in the local health economy.

Find out more about the Confident Leader. The next programmes will run in Leeds from 24 November and London from 12 January.


Giving adults voice, choice and control in social care

The Department of Health has published guidance on how registered nurses, care and support staff can enable relationship-centred care, and how they can work with others to achieve personalised care and support.

The guidance is for staff across a range of care settings, including care home staff and carers who look after people in their own homes.


Mental health under pressure

A briefing paper from the King's Fund looks at mental health as a system of care. The paper examines individual pressures within the wider context of provider and commissioner actions.


Influencing skills

As NHS and other organisations increasingly have to work together to solve common problems, influencing skills are more important than ever. Influencing is a combination of persuasion and negotiation - being able to persuade others and negotiate to reach an agreement.

The influencing skills training session on 21 January in Bristol, 2 March in London, 21 April in Birmingham and 26 May in Manchester includes top tips to make an instant improvement to the way you communicate and to achieve better outcomes.


Guide to using community pharmacy in urgent care

NHS England has published a “quick guide” to making use of community pharmacy in urgent care. The guide is aimed at system resilience groups and commissioners.

It includes examples of services that have already been delivered by community pharmacy teams, which could be commissioned on a local basis to relieve the pressures urgent care is facing, as well as highlighting nationally commissioned services.


The way forward: opportunities for providers

NHS trusts are in a triple bind of financial pressure, rising demand and regulation. With growing pressure to maintain quality of care and safety and a sector wide quest for heroic efficiency gains, the challenge often appears insurmountable.

PCC and Capsticks have joined forces to create events where provider organisations can explore how to engage with primary care and community services to work towards viable local solutions.


New ambition to halve rate of stillbirths and infant deaths

The health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, has announced a new ambition to reduce the rate of stillbirths, neonatal and maternal deaths in England by 50% by 2030.

The number of brain injuries occurring during or soon after birth will also be targeted as part of a new commitment by the government, in partnership with consultants, midwives and other experts across the country to make England one of the safest places to have a baby.


National Optical Conference dominates eye news

The November 2015 LOCSU News is a dedicated report from the recent National Optical Conference. In it, David Geddes, head of NHS primary care commissioning calls for commissioners to join the dots on eye health and president of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists, Carrie MacEwan urges a more collaborative approach with community eye health and optometrists.


Place-based systems of care: a way forward for the NHS

The NHS in England is facing growing financial and service pressures at a time of rising demand. This King’s Fund paper proposes a new approach to tackling these challenges. It argues that NHS organisations need to move away from a “fortress mentality” whereby they act to secure their own individual interests and future, and instead establish place-based “systems of care” in which they collaborate with other NHS organisations and services to address the challenges and improve the health of the populations they serve. The paper argues that this will require the backing and support of national bodies and policy-makers, and fundamental changes to the role of commissioning in the NHS.


Fall of the tsars?

According to the HSJ, NHS England is considering making cuts to the number of national clinical directors - there are currently 23. If true, will the move represent a blow to clinical leadership? Cast your vote on this week’s NHS Networks poll at


Primary Care Commissioning (PCC)

Primary Care Commissioning (PCC) is an independent provider of practical, expert support to commissioners, general practices and the wider provider community.

A not-for-profit social business with roots in the NHS, PCC’s mission is to help NHS organisations to improve services for patients with the emphasis on quality of care and value for money.

Our experience has been gained over more than a decade of supporting better commissioning and primary care development.

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