In a draft code of conduct published by the NHS Commissioning Board (NHS CB), it was revealed locally enhanced services (LES) funds will form part of CCGs’ baseline allocations – with the exception of public health services.
The draft publication on how to manage conflicts of interests when commissioning primary care services, has sought to ensure CCGs operate within the legal framework without being “bound by over-prescriptive rules”.
Under the guidance, CCGs are also being advised to exclude all GPs from the commissioning of GP services, leaving lay members and secondary care healthcare professionals to make the decisions alone.
It is claimed that in general, commissioning community-based services through competitive tender or AQP will introduce “greater transparency” and help reduce the scope for conflicts.
CCGs will also be obliged to notify the NHS CB when commissioning any service from a primary care provider that is related to the services that some or all GP practice provider under the GP contract to ensure the CCG does not “cut across” or duplicate the board’s commissioning role.
It is anticipated the NHS CB will incorporate the Code of Conduct alongside the general safeguards described in Towards establishment: Creating responsive and accountable CCGs into the guidance that it publishes for CCGs in relation to managing conflicts of interest.