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£100m med tech programme update

NHS England’s National Commercial Director for Specialised Commissioning and NHS England South’s Regional Medical Director and Clinical Lead for the High-Cost Tariff-Excluded Devices (HCTED) programme, reflect on progress of the last year:

Each year NHS England spends in excess of half a billion pounds on high-cost tariff-excluded devices (HCTEDs) for patient care as part of a directly commissioned pathway of care.

To get best value for patients and taxpayers, in April 2016 NHS England introduced a national approach for sourcing and ordering these products, which is expected to see savings of over £60million freed up for use in the NHS following full migration of all NHS trusts to the new national approach.

Last year marked a significant milestone in the programme, where spend through the national sourcing system hit £100million.

The progress we are making is encouraging. Completion of the transition to the new approach will realise more benefits for the NHS and provide a single ‘front door’ for industry to bring forward enhanced value for systematic national adoption.

More than 90 of the 125 NHS trusts that provide clinical services using devices are ordering one or more of the 17 identified categories of devices through the new approach, with an increasing number ordering the majority of their devices in this way. Because many hospitals have different ordering systems for different clinical services, trusts roll out the approach for each of the 17 categories in a phased way, with support to make the change from the NHS Supply Chain team.

On a technical level, this means around 1,000 combinations of device category and trusts to ensure a well-managed transition for, which the NHS is currently around a quarter of the way through.

The continued focus and commitment of all partners – NHS trusts, NHS England, NHS Supply Chain and Industry – is essential to complete the transition during the next year.  To reflect this, we have taken steps to strengthen the programme team to support the NHS increase the pace of change. Regional champions are now in place, driving the programme forward with the support of the national NHS England Specialised Commissioning team and our delivery partner, NHS Supply Chain.

The clinical review of the programme will help to improve value through reducing unwarranted variation between hospital trusts of the use of the current expansive catalogue of devices. And through improved matching of device type to clinical need, while the development of ‘MedTechScan’ in collaboration with NICE will enable more rapid adoption of new, innovative medical devices for patients. MedTechScan is a new, secure online system which will replace and unify a number of existing sources of information about medical devices, diagnostics and digital health technologies, which will launch later this year.

Completing the rollout later this year aligns well with the wider Procurement Transformation Programme (PTP) overseen by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) for all procured goods and services for the NHS, which is implementing a national sourcing approach as the Future Operating Model (FOM) for the NHS to be available for all categories of hospital spend from October 2018.

Peter Huskinson

Peter Huskinson is the National Commercial Director of Specialised Commissioning at NHS England.

He joined the NHS in 2003 after a successful career in industry, and has worked in a range of commissioning and transformation roles with responsibility for primary, community acute and mental health care.

He co-chairs NHS England’s National Programme of Care Board for Blood and Infection overseeing the work of clinical reference groups in infection, immunity and haematology.

Vaughan Lewis

Dr Vaughan Lewis is Regional Medical Director, Specialised Commissioning, NHS England South, a position he has held since 2015.
Vaughan is the clinical lead of NHS England’s High-Cost Tariff-Excluded Device programme.
He was a Consultant Paediatrician at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital from 2002 to 2015 during which time he held clinical management roles including Medical Director and chair of the South West Clinical Senate.
He is a member of the Women and Children’s Programme of Care Board, chairs the Congenital Heart Disease Programme Board and is the national clinical lead for improving value in specialised commissioning.

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