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14.12.16

CCGs assist local economies as well as health, report finds

A new NHS Clinical Commissioners (NHSCC) report has shown the extent to which CCGs have benefitted the social and economic wellbeing of their local populations as well as their health.

The report, ‘Shaping healthy cities and economies: the role in clinical commissioning’, has illustrated how clinical leaders in England’s core cities – the eight largest cities outside London – are making a positive contribution to their local economies.

Examples of the ventures by CCGs beyond traditional boundaries include tackling health inequalities and social exclusion, increasing skills and employment, and attracting inward investment to help local healthcare sectors reach their full potential.

Chair of NHSCC’s Core Cities Network and clinical chair of NHS Sheffield CCG, Dr Tim Moorhead, said: “This new report demonstrates the important role the health sector plays in local economies and shows how CCGs in England’s core cities are commissioning not only to improve the health but social and economic wellbeing of their populations.

“While there is a lot of good work already happening we are keen to do even more, and the recommendations in the report highlight how the contribution that clinical commissioning makes to local economic growth can be further increased.”

Programmes lauded by the report include Manchester’s CCG-led Working Well scheme, which supports people to address underlying issues contributing to unemployment and helps people find jobs that suit their individual needs.

NHSCC’s report also outlines how Sheffield is working with local government and community partners to encourage more physical activity, while Leeds has taken advantage of its status as home to one of Europe’s largest teaching hospitals and several biotechnology companies to create an Innovation Health Hub – with CCGs driving £1bn in investment and creating 10,000 new jobs.

The report concluded that CCGs are already doing much to contribute to local economic growth, but acknowledged that they still have “significant opportunity to do more”. 

It made several recommendations to national and local organisations, from CCGs to the Treasury and NHS England, to help maximise CCGs’ roles in driving economic prosperity in their regions.

Suggestions made by the report include considering giving CCGs a more prominent role in the next round of devolution deals; developing suitable metrics to measure the contribution of the local health sector; and more proactive co-operation between CCGs and local authorities around STPs.

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