Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Week 2: It started with a tweet…

This is the tweet that started it:

I wrote about this tweet on day 96 of my 100-day blog.  The response I got and subsequent conversation on twitter is summarised here, produced brilliantly by Clare Helm.

The response, whilst containing great examples of health service providers using social media for patient benefit, wasn’t full of a huge amount of similar examples by commissioners.  There was however a need identified for more support for commissioners in this area.  Following this Clare Helm had the idea that we could set up an online community through Twitter for commissioners to share ideas and spread good practise.  From there @WeComissioners was born.

As part of the WeNurses family, there will be WeCommissioners Twitter chats every two to three weeks.  I’ll be supporting running this with, amongst others the wonderful Clare Helm, who works at NHS England supporting CCG development (although WeCommissioners isn’t formally part of her day-job).

Our first live Twitter chat is 8-9pm 11 February.  Do join us; there’s helpful info on how to join a Twitter Chat here.

For this first @WeCommissioners chat we want to talk about collaboration in commissioning.  We intend on this chat being open to discuss any element of collaboration that is of interest and value to you.

Commissioning has emerged as an increasingly important driver of quality, efficiency and outcomes for patients in the past 10 years.  Commissioning put simply is how we plan, agree and monitor services; including procurement where this is needed as part of the process.  Due to the complex nature of health and social care services, this is much more complicated in reality.  This can include a number of inter-related activities ranging from assessing the needs of a specified population, through the clinically based design of patient pathways, to development and agreement of detailed service specification and contract negotiation or procurement, which is subject to continuous quality assessment (taken from commissioning information on the NHS England website).

To get the best outcomes for patients, to ensure services are safe, effective, provide a valued experience and to ensure the most effective use of public money, commissioners must collaborate.  The, now not-so-new, NHS structure means that different organisations need to collaborate to achieve shared goals and to best safeguard the public.  Achievement of the aspirations for patients and the public described in the respective outcomes frameworks for the NHS, Social Care and Public Health require significant collaboration between organisations locally, regionally and nationally.

Before the chat, it might be helpful start to think about the following questions:

  • what collaboration means to you;
  • how commissioning organisations should collaborate;
  • who should commissioning organisations collaborate with; and
  • what lessons have been learnt previously about collaboration that we can benefit from?

Some further background reading that may be of interest prior to the chat:

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