A King’s Fund report investigates recent work on the value agenda, i.e. efforts aimed at reducing unnecessary costs while maintaining or improving the quality of care. This is based mostly on experience at three diverse NHS acute hospital trusts:
- The Royal Free NHS Foundation Trust.
- Bolton NHS Foundation Trust.
- Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
Approaches identified include:
- Development of shared clinical pathways across different hospitals / sites, striving for best patient outcomes at the lowest cost possible, based on service re-design through Clinical Practice Groups (CPGs).
- Use of tried and tested quality improvement methodologies, with a “value-based” twist.
- Development of Virtual Ward approaches to a range of hospital services, with a view to the provision of consultant-led care to patients in their own homes.
Some common principles emerged, said to be important for improving the chances of success:
- Clarity on long-term, joined-up, strategy.
- Devolved and delegated (less top-down) leadership approaches.
- Allocation of adequate time and resources.
- Staff engagement and empowerment.
- Rigorous analysis of data and indicators, to monitor progress on value improvement strategies.
“Improving quality and reducing costs are sometimes seen as conflicting aims, when they are in fact often two sides of the same coin”.
Approaches to better value: improving quality and cost. Press release. [Online]: King’s Fund, October 4th 2017.
This relates to:
Jabbal, J. [and] Lewis, M. (2018). Approaches to better value: improving quality and cost. London: King’s Fund, October 2018.
There is also an Executive Summary.
An earlier report in this ongoing King’s Fund project:
Alderwick, H. Robertson, R. [and] Appleby, J. (2015). Better value in the NHS: the role of changes in clinical practice. London: King’s Fund, July 8th 2015.
There is an Executive Summary.
Submission Prior to the NHS Long-Term Plan
A report from NHS Providers suggests that continuous cost-cutting alone is not, in itself, sustainable:
Making the most of the money: efficiency and the long-term plan. [Online]: NHS Providers, October 2018.
Section headings comprise:
- Key Points.
- The efficiency challenge.
- Cost reductions.
- Productivity improvements.
- System efficiencies.
- Solutions and recommendations.