Yesterday I joined a teleconference finalising the survey which will be used to assess the relationship between CCGs and NHS England, focusing the behaviours experienced.
The survey, organised by NHS Clinical Commissioners, will be available in October and will be completed by CCG chairs, chief officers and chief financial officers. It comes at a key time. The first round of 'assurance' reviews and feedback will have taken place, and planning for 2014/15 will be underway. Has the system moved towards focusing on patients, joint responsibility and the integrated working needed in the new commissioning system? Have CCGs been given (or felt) the freedom needed to succeed? Have they been given the support to develop beyond authorisation?
It's clear that the survey is welcomed by NHS England and this is key. Learning Organisations need feedback, and the fact that NHS England and CCGs will undergo assessments moving forward is important.
As the role of CCGs develops it's increasingly clear that NHS England is just one of the organisations with whom CCGs have a vital partnership, and where a mature relationship is essential. Health and Wellbeing Boards are becoming increasingly important, and with the implications of the spending review still uncertain CCGs are developing key relationships with local authorities.
Behaviours and relationships will be crucial if we are all to keep our focus on population health and joint working. The survey is an important starting point. A collective CCG voice and feedback is key to this.