Utilising independent sector capacity to reduce waiting lists
We procured independent sector hospital capacity to divert patients at the point of referrals from NHS trusts to prevent a build-up of patient waiting lists backlogs.
We procured independent sector hospital capacity to divert patients at the point of referrals from NHS trusts to prevent a build-up of patient waiting lists backlogs.
Our interactive visual dashboard helped the NHS Leadership Academy report more easily and more clearly engagement with their website and social media.
We reduced the month-end process by four days at an NHS trust and introduced new process to streamline payments and bring the month-end timetable forward.
We created a range of bespoke materials to deliver SEO training to the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Integrated Care Board (ICB) and Integrated Care System (ICS) Communications teams, which helped them improve the performance of their new websites.
We helped NHS England roll out a programme of planning support for the increase and improvement of elective care activity at every integrated care system (ICS) in the country.
Designing and developing a new website for the Lincolnshire Integrated Care Board, we created an interactive platform for the public to get involved and find essential healthcare information.
We developed an alert which scans a whole health system for areas of health quality concern that need to be looked at and may need improvement.
Our flexible OTiS Tactical tool is helping integrated care systems to monitor emerging pressures on urgent and emergency care and impacts on patient flow through acute hospitals.
We have been supporting the Lancashire and South Cumbria's New Hospitals Programme to design and deliver digital infrastructures to benefit new hospital services, enhancing usability, data driven insights and automation.
A project to bring back a considerable number of staff to complete outstanding continuing healthcare assessments attracted skilled people from across health and care.
We helped the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust implement the national smoking cessation service referring patients discharged from hospital to GPs for ongoing stop smoking support.
The Black Country Integrated Medicines Optimisation Committee fosters partnerships across the integrated care system to optimise use medicines and care pathways, and improve patient safety and experience.
Using our population health management tool, we have helped identify people with clinical and social issues across Lancashire and South Cumbria, enabling early interventions to improve health outcomes.
Our support has resulted in a significant improvement in the quality of financial information held.
We provided insight to clinical enquiries, produced reports and worked to develop standard operating procedures to help improve patient safety and increase access to the vaccine in Lancashire and South Cumbria
We helped Greater Preston and Chorley & South Ribble Clinical Commissioning Groups significantly reduce high-dose opioid prescribing, bringing it into line with evidence-based recommendations.
We provide a centralised HR function to five integrated care boards which ensures that better quality and a wider breadth of HR services are provided at a lower cost due to efficiencies at scale.
We helped the Cheshire and Merseyside Integrated Care System increase patients measuring their blood pressure at home, delivering a major digital transformation within primary care which became the first national digital-first blueprint.
Our medicines management and optimisation team improved safety and care for elderly Wirral care home residents, helped to prevent falls and hospital admissions, and saved costs.
Our Medicines Safety Assurance Tool gives at-a-glance visibility of progress against actions required to ensure patient safety and helps commissioners and GP practices to provide assurance of compliance.
We helped health and care leaders in the Midlands to take a transparent, collaborative approach to uncovering opportunities for improvement in staff health and wellbeing and creating an actionable plan for the whole region.
We engaged with primary care providers to streamline the process for referrals into the National Diabetes Prevention Programme, and we contacted eligible patients directly to motivate a referral into the programme. Both of these activities resulted in a significant increase of referrals within the Black Country and West Birmingham area.
We designed and implemented a programme of transformation to enable remote monitoring across healthcare in the Black Country and West Birmingham health system.
We codesigned and delivered a transformation programme for the improvement of care for people with learning disabilities and/or autism.
We provided a tailored package of strategic and operational support to a newly formed pharmacy team at a primary care network, helping them increase the rate of structured medication reviews.
We helped an NHS trust analyse and visualise data on key performance indicators with the aim of releasing efficiencies and to assess inequalities in service provision on a range of areas.
We are helping hospital trusts identify the potential to recover energy costs from telecom devices mounted on the roofs of their buildings.
We ensured that vaccination centres functioned with safety at the highest level by training staff and providing ongoing senior pharmaceutical support.
Our business intelligence experts helped the Lancashire and South Cumbria COVID-19 Vaccination Programme to provide an efficient and equitable service.
Our dynamic heat maps showed where vaccine uptake was lower, where there was a higher concentration of social care providers and other population analyses by different criteria to inform the planning and placement of COVID-19 vaccination centres.
We helped integrated care systems increase numbers of annual physicals health checks for patients with severe mental illness by finding and implementing suitable technology to enable healthcare staff to complete them in a single patient visit.
We quickly mobilised financial services helping an NHS trust to process and pay supplier invoices.
We helped key stakeholders in the Cheshire and Merseyside health system see combined intelligence reports on capacity and demand for health services, allowing them to respond to COVID-19 quickly.
We facilitated the design of and implemented a bespoke online tool to make it easier for staff to report bullying, harassment and discrimination
We helped commissioners with medicines management expertise in setting up and maintaining community pharmacy services, freeing up capacity across primary care.
We helped an integrated care system implement a framework for making decisions that addresses bias and improves how equality is considered from the outset of decisions and proposals.
We combined national metrics and local NHS, council and third sector data to help health systems understand where there are inequalities within local services.
We had another successful year in 2020/21 at the Pan Mersey Area Prescribing Committee promoting the safe and efficient use of medicines and completing a series of medicines and policy reviews.
We helped an integrated care system to evaluate demand and capacity for COVID-19 LAMP testing to ensure labs could meet the need for routine staff testing.
We evaluated the impact of the national Medicines Optimisation in Care Homes programme.
We helped the council and clinical commissioning group in Trafford to develop a joint five-year equality, diversity and inclusion strategy.
We enabled medication reviews of patients with long-term prescriptions for urinary incontinence medication which enabled clinicians to recommend 'drug holidays'.
Our work supporting implementation of the GP Community Pharmacy Consultation Service in the East of England led to a significant increase in practices referring patients with minor ailments to community pharmacies.
We developed resources and videos and provided expert advice and evaluation to help NHS England and Improvement gather, develop and outline a wide range of wellbeing support options available to NHS employees.
We have helped a hospital trust to tackle the backlog of waiting lists while maintaining quality of care by using a combination of chatbot, risk stratification and artificial intelligence.
Our experts ensured that the Lancashire and South Cumbria Vaccination Programme met the Public Sector Equality Duty.
We helped deliver the strategic engagement and created opportunities for shared learning in the development of a national programme of Community Champions supporting risk groups with COVID-19.
We analysed data and provided insight which informed a national programme for improving infection prevention and control about where to focus support to reduce infection levels.
Our Equality & Inclusion Team supported development of a hot hub service managing COVID patients in Leicestershire.
Our finance experts helped North Staffordshire Combined Healthcare NHS Trust to find significant savings.
Staff from across the Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit was deployed to support a national programme for oxygen, ventilation, medical devices and clinical consumables which ensured that sufficient ventilators were procured at a time of huge global demand and that all patients had access to oxygen when required.
We managed a programme of implementing infection prevention and control safety principles to reduce infection rates and provide better access to services during the pandemic.
We saved time from data processing by introducing a new tool to streamline data entry when invoicing key customers.
Our Corporate Finance team has saved up to 50 hours per month in financial reporting and invoicing after introducing robotic process automation to some transactional finance processes.
We reduced the time it takes to process essential financial planning templates by 50% and established a data warehouse for financial reporting.
We halved the time it takes to load the financial forecast into the ledger and reduced the risk of errors.
Our Medicines Management and Optimisation team worked with the Black Country and West Birmingham Clinical Commissioning Group, GP practices and care homes on a successful project to increase the use of proxy ordering for medicines.
Our Data Quality team developed a custom data input template to streamline referrals of patient with post-Covid illness, saving time and effort for clinicians, improving access for patients and creating better reporting opportunities.
We designed a national database to record, monitor and report the onboarding, training and development of continuing healthcare (CHC) staff recruited quickly and in large numbers to clear the backlog of CHC assessments caused by the pandemic.
We created a single online system which allows staff at Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust to book desks, meeting rooms and clinic rooms. UBook really came into its own during the COVID-19 pandemic as it was quickly modified to enable social distancing and other infection control measures.
We worked with commissioners, providers and other stakeholders across Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire to improve the quality of service for patients and cut costs across planned care.
MLCSU supported the Sue Ryder charity to improve its management and governance of medicines
MLCSU's Improvement Unit set up and managed a successful programme management office (PMO) for the National NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC) Strategic Improvement Programme.
MLCSU are proud to have supported Cheshire and Merseyside Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) with development of their five-year strategy.
We created an effective programme management office (PMO) to support Shropshire CCG and Telford and Wrekin CCG during their merger in 2021.
In 2019 England's CSUs were tasked with bringing the National Cervical Screening Programme back within the NHS in a matter of months. MLCSU's Improvement Unit played a key role in the success of this initiative.
The COVID-19 outbreak placed an unprecedented strain on the health and social care system. A coordinated and well-managed response by MLCSU and adam has meant that patients were placed into care faster than ever before with providers able to demonstrate both compliance as well as the ability to meet the patients’ assessed needs.
The objective of the project was to streamline payments for joint funded packages between the Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit (MLCSU) and Staffordshire County Council by moving to a monthly electronic process.
We strongly believe that improving patient experience is at the heart of all that we do. In creating the Weight Management Referral Hub, we have embraced a person-centred approach and designed a tool that allows patients to choose the weight management product which they feel they can connect with most successfully, and which then provides a flexible and tailored service to match their individual needs.
Our programme helped the NHS to restore, recover and renew following the enormous disruption caused by COVID-19. It has created a blueprint for future recruitment and retention of expert Continuing Healthcare (CHC) practitioners, helping us to respond to this current crisis and be in a better place to respond to the next.
By producing easy-read versions of our questionnaires we can improve participation in our engagement and consultation exercises with people who would otherwise be put off by longer, more complicated forms.
Our work supported the recruitment of the bank and volunteer staff working at vaccination centres, at a time of high pressure in the NHS when work volumes were already extremely high, capacity was already strained, and staff were having to navigate difficult home lives because of COVID-19.
Background - When NHS Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) became a single organisation, a need for media training was identified to ensure all members had a good understanding of how the media operates and that they would feel confident interacting with them.
Background - As part of the ongoing response to the Coronavirus pandemic, St Helens Borough Council and NHS St Helens Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) identified an increased need for urgent strategic public relations advice in multi-organisational stakeholder meetings and to support external public health communications.
Background - Lancashire and South Cumbria Health and Care Partnership (HCP) is an integrated care system where there is a collaborative partnership of local authority, NHS and community organisations that join-up health and care in the area. It’s a complex partnership that needed a central media office function to coordinate a system approach.
Background - The Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent CCGs’ Learning Disabilities Mortality Review (LeDeR) annual report 2019/20 was not written with the public in mind. We were asked to produce an easy read summary to ensure that the information was accessible to people with learning disabilities.
Background - The Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust asked us to project manage their 2020/21 annual report and to showcase their achievements in a public summary.
Background - The North Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) requested support to summarise a complex public consultation about improving community-based services. The NHS Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit (MLCSU) Communications and Engagement Service led on a full suite of public-facing documents and wider campaign materials to explain the proposals and encourage residents to engage with the consultation.
We worked in partnership with local authorities to successfully complete retrospective assessments of individuals supported via COVID-19 funding arrangements during the suspension of the NHS Continuing Healthcare Framework.
We led a collaboration between the five commissioning support units in England to provide a range of programme management, project management and organisational change support, assisting the national programme of clinical commissioning group mergers.
We have been helping the recovery of elective care activity in the North West region, using innovative techniques to support engagement with NHS trusts for the national programme of clinical validation to prioritise inpatient elective waiting lists.
Using our website design tool, PrimaryWeb, and our tailored support, a GP partnership developed a purpose-built website to bring the services, guidance and stories of four practices all in one digital place.
Our Improvement Unit supported the implementation of the outpatient transformation programme, optimising virtual consultations, increasing the rollout of patient initiated follow up and mapping data from lessons learnt during COVID-19 to restore elective care.
We successfully redeployed two existing members of staff at short notice to provide pharmacy onsite support at Manchester’s NHS Nightingale Hospital North West.
We developed a tailored booking solution for Wirral University Teaching Hospital's staff flu jab programme when COVID-19 made it unsafe to run the usual drop-in sessions with people waiting in a queue.
We set up a "Gold Command Room" in collaboration with partners from across the Lancashire and South Cumbria health system, to provide tactical and analytical support and ease system pressures due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the winter season.
We facilitated the implementation of SimplyBook, an interim solution for COVID-19 vaccinations scheduling, until the national system was operational.
We provided programme and project management support to implement the national COVID-19 vaccination programme in Herefordshire, Worcestershire and the Black Country, establishing over 50 vaccination centres.
Through structured medication reviews, we supported the proactive management of individual care home patients needs, saving over £149,000 in drug costs and on average 62 GP appointments per month across the Black Country and West Birmingham Sustainability and Transformation Partnership.
We created and delivered a tailored management development programme of training for South Sefton and Southport and Formby CCGs, designed to support the adoption of best practices in managing and leading.
Using chatbot technology for our referral management service has resulted in increased efficiency and a better experience for patients.
We helped our clients in Merseyside to identify and commission the most appropriate block contract of intermediate care beds, reaching a decision on a provider in less than a month.
Following the COVID-19 surge in demand for clinical consumables and services, we were tasked with finding alternative ways to procure hard to source items such as masks, filters, breathing circuits, exhalation ports and reservoir bags, improving the resilience of the supply chain.
We planned and supported the implementation of services in Southport and Formby GPs, in accordance with the latest Primary Care Network Directed Enhanced Services Contract.
We managed a project with NHSEI to standardise data and improve the quality of the NHS Supply Chain database, supporting the procurement of PPE.
MLCSU’s change management specialists have ensured the rapid introduction of video consultations across the north of England to improve patient safety following the outbreak of COVID-19.
We delivered a wave of rapid improvement challenges in elective care specialties across the North Region.
We successfully coordinated the primary care apprenticeships programme in Lancashire and South Cumbria.
MLCSU seconded over a senior member of staff with specialist procurement expertise to support the government's ventilator procurement programme.
Our population health analytics platform, Aristotle Xi, has helped a group of Leicestershire general practices to offer the right support to a greater number of patients nearing the end of their life.
We used the Me and My Medicines campaign to help patients raise concerns and use their medicines more effectively.
Our experts have helped to develop the national NHS continuing healthcare digital specification
Background North Staffordshire GP Federation asked us to help solve the problem of locum sessions not being filled (with clinics being cancelled as a result), and high agency fees.
Our support for the establishment of Chester East Primary Care Network has been held up as best practice by NHS England.
We designed an innovative, flexible procurement process to support transformation of a discharge pathway.
We procured the ideal solution for GP practices across Worcestershire wanting to upgrade and transfer their communication systems.
We worked with West Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group on an innovative procurement of a community-based, holistic pain management service where a previous process had failed.
Our Children's Continuing Care Team in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland is the first to get all eligible children and young people requiring home care packages onto a personal health budget.
We have produced a manifesto to support the development of 23 localities across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.
Our population profiling and risk stratification work is being used to inform a range of activity across the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Sustainability and Transformation Partnership area.
We created a user-friendly, scalable website for England's first GP super-partnership.
Integrating data analytics to build a profile of over 65s in Walsall led to improved patient care and significant savings.
Our review of anti-coagulant prescribing improved patient safety and reduced costs.
Face-to-face medication reviews by a pharmacist enabled a GP practice to make optimum use of clinician time, improved the quality and safety of prescribing and patient experience of healthcare and resulted in cost savings.
Our integrated care medicines optimisation project in Wirral resulted in better patient care and potential cost improvements of almost £0.5million.
Our pharmacist-led polypharmacy review in Birmingham resulted in better patient care and cost improvements within its first year.
We produced a dynamic, interactive, case-study-based annual report for West Midlands Academic Health Science Network.
We managed the Lancashire and South Cumbria Stroke Service Review as a major collaborative exercise, including from the outset patients, carers and members of the public as well as commissioners, providers from acute and community services, public health, the Stroke Association and community groups.
Our analysis and work to track progress in transforming Dudley’s care model helped the system to identify and focus on areas for improvement, bolstering the case for change and informing development of the clinical model.
Since launch in January, 543 vacancies have been processed using Midlands and Lancashire CSU’s (MLCSU’s) new computerised recruitment system, 'Trac'. Recruiting managers and MLCSU People Services are delighted that the first quarter’s figures confirm we are 'on Trac'. The system is used for MLCSU's own recruitment needs and also by many of our CCG customers.
NHS England’s low value medicines consultation, supported by Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit (MLCSU), resulted in the prescribing of some inappropriate or ineffective treatments being stopped, benefiting patients and reducing costs. Some of the proposals were amended in light of the evidence supplied by the patient, public and other stakeholder responses.
Our Referral Management Service (RMS) has improved care and experience for patients as well as reduced costs. Patients have reported that their needs are quickly addressed and they feel better informed. Health care providers are receiving fuller, more accurate and more appropriate referrals and commissioners have better information and resources to be able to plan and prioritise services.
Redesigning the process of developing policies that define when a specific treatment will be commissioned has delivered efficiencies and improved value for 15 clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) across Lancashire, Merseyside and Warrington. Patients now get the right treatment, at the right time.
This project to optimise the use of inhaled corticosteroids in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) quickly delivered improvements in patient care as well as cost efficiencies.
We supported South Sefton CCG and Southport & Formby CCG working with local providers to ensure clinically effective treatments were funded appropriately. With their new electronic Prior Approval Scheme, the CCGs have reported a fall in activity and expenditure of £412,000 (19%).
Our pilot care home medication review resulted in greatly improved pharmaceutical care for patients, direct cost improvements and potential prevention of unnecessary hospital admissions.
Working on a pilot with Birmingham South Central Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), our Medicines Management and Optimisation (MMO) Team identified and reduced medicines waste in three care homes.
We established a new Area Prescribing Committee (APC) for Birmingham and developed a Joint Forumulary to promote safe, evidence-based and cost-effective prescribing.
Reviewing the medication given to patients in West Cheshire care homes improved patient care and resulted in savings.
Supporting a busy practice to redesign its medication review process improved medicines use while helping to manage the associated workload.
Integrating medicines management and optimisation (MMO) pharmacists with cluster community care teams improved patient care and realised cost improvements.
Introducing patient-led repeat ordering in Wirral empowered patients to directly order their own medicines from their GP practice and resulted in reduced waste and costs.
A repeat ordering project in Warrington improved patient safety, reduced medicines waste and saved money.
Uptake of Electonic Prescription Services and Electronic Repeat Dispensing was increased during a pilot project we carried out in Halton and St Helens.
Our Medicines Safety Assurance Tool (MSAT™) has helped clinical commissioning groups to take appropriate actions around patient safety.
Midlands and Lancashire CSU Communications and Engagement service has increased patient and clinical uptake to the Cheshire Care Record through sustained engagement, PR and promotion.
We used a dynamic purchasing system to offer help following a national domiciliary care provider’s difficulties
Our work to review Patient Group Directions ensured an immunisation programme in the West Midlands continued without interruption.
Our Medicines Management and Public Involvement & Insight teams have been commended by Coventry City Council for developing a Pharmaceutical Needs Assessment (PNA) to assess pharmacy services in relation to local health needs in Coventry, within a very tight timescale.
We received great support working with Midlands and Lancashire CSU. We found the team to be extremely knowledgeable, enthusiastic and creative. The team were flexible and patient to our…Tracy Grainger
As a novice in the Communications world, I engaged the support and assistance of the CSU Team to help me launch a campaign, ‘Eyes & Ears – Suspect it – Report it’ around awareness of abuse towards adults who…Carol Gaynor
“The Strategy Unit ran a session on developing a vanguard evaluation strategy at our national new care models evaluation event. The presentation was captivating and insightful, and brilliantly articulated the challenges that almost all other vanguard evaluators were facing.”
“I would have been lost without the clarity and insight that working with The Strategy Unit has given us. You are remarkable in your ability to both connect with the topic and strategically create solutions and options to move us forward.”
“U Assure is user-friendly, easy to navigate and makes the whole process of information risk management far less time consuming“
The MLCSU communications and engagement team did a great job with our three 2015/16 Annual Reports and then, to a tight deadline, produced our joint summary in the form of a newspaper wrap…Sally Young
It’s vital to have robust, reliable, up to date evidence about our local population, their use of services and health. The Strategy Unit’s research has been invaluable in helping us work with our partners to review how mental health services are planned, commissioned, funded and delivered in our local area.
“Using U Assure has enabled us to review all our processes and the amount of person confidential data that we generate and ensure that we do not keep information which we don’t really need“
“The Strategy Unit are inspiring in their commitment, dedication to evidence and use of innovative analysis as a way to improve health and care.”
Midlands and Lancashire CSU is a key strategic and operational partner to the L&SC STP in developing and delivering its complex work programme, helping to establish shared governance arrangements….Amanda Doyle
“I understand that over the last ten days or so the support you and your colleagues have provided has been above and beyond in supporting the CCG QIPP process – thank you for that, as its appreciated, especially around such a critical component of the CCG business and against the backdrop of the timescales and competing priorities.”
The product you provided…gave me a more informed narrative and evidence to help me further drive the West Midlands Mental Health Commission priorities.
“Midlands & Lancashire CSU successfully mobilised IT services across our six CCGs and two provider organisations during January and February 2016. The work was particularly challenging due to the limited timeframes…Nick Armstrong
I would like to thank the Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit (CSU) who provided a high quality service to NHS England; their analysis helped us understand a wide range of views on our proposed prescribing guidance…Sir Bruce Keogh
I have quoted the headlines from this remarkable report at two board meetings over the last two days and the response has been identical…I have never seen all of the LA elected members of…Dr David Hegarty
“Working with Midlands and Lancashire CSU was a pleasure from start to finish. The team was very easy to work with, accessible at any time and incredibly creative in how they used our branding, right down to the last detail…Sarah Millard
Midlands and Lancashire CSU HQ
120 Grove Road
Stoke on Trent
Midlands and Lancashire CSU
Lancashire Business Park
Midlands and Lancashire CSU
Countess of Chester Health Park
CH2 1 HJ
Midlands and Lancashire CSU
Midlands and Lancashire CSU
3rd Floor North Point
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