The NHS Commissioning Board (NHS CB) decided upon four initial SCN Groupings in July 2012. These will operate throughout the country and comprise:
- Maternity and Children.
- Mental health, dementia and neurological conditions.
The single operating framework outlined in this document aims to strengthen continuity of care across a range of health conditions. The new model should be in place by April 2013, and will consolidate the management, support and clinical leadership for mental health, dementia, neurological conditions, maternity and children, cancer and cardiovascular services. The main purpose of clinical networks is to enable clinicians to gather and share insight into treating complex conditions, and offer treatment across different settings. There is a FAQs document.
Sir Bruce Keogh, National Medical Director for the NHS Commissioning Board, said:
“Hyper-acute stroke is one example of how this approach can work, by making recommendations for concentrated expertise and rapid access to services which save lives. The NHS Commissioning Board has agreed an investment of £42 million to support the new networks as part of driving up quality and consistency in treating these conditions. The Strategic Clinical Networks break down any silos between organisations, focusing on the patient, their experience and the outcome of treatment. They will play an important part in ensuring consistency and promoting collaboration”.
NHS Commissioning Board (2012). Strategic clinical networks: single operating framework. London: NHS Commissioning Board (NHS CB), November 2012.
[A brief reference to this item features in Dementia and Elderly Care: the Latest Evidence Newsletter (RWNHST), Volume 3 Issue 5, January 2013].