What’s your local CCG doing? A quick guide

Philip John is one of the users of Help Me Investigate looking at his local clinical commissioning group (CCG), for which there isn’t much information (there isn’t even a website).

Here’s why: CCGs are being authorised in four waves, which take place from this month through to March 2013. In addition to those four waves, there are dozens of CCGs which were already operating as ‘pathfinder’ groups – in other words, pilots.

You can find out which wave your CCG is in by searching for it in this document (PDF).

Philip’s CCG – South East Staffs and Seisdon Peninsular CCG– is part of Wave 4 of authorisation. So at the moment they’re preparing for the first moderation panel in January, which means, according to this guidance, they’re currently probably doing the following:

  • “Pre-application: Emerging CCGs prepare to take on their full commissioning responsibilities. These preparations begin with a self-assessment, progress to the assumption of delegated responsibility, and then CCGs work towards establishment and authorisation. As part of their preparation, emerging CCGs begin to assemble the evidence they are required to submit.
  • “Application: Each aspiring CCG will need to submit an application form to the NHS CB (or NHS CBA if pre-October 2012) on or before their agreed application date. The application form will need to be signed by the Chair of the governing body and the Accountable Officer.”

(More detail on the process can be found in Developing Clinical Commissioning Groups: Towards Authorisation)

Notably, that process names a Chair and Accountable Officer, so if you want to start looking at your local CCG you could try to identify those now. Likely routes would be through a call or email to the newly-formed NHS Commissioning Board, or to the relevant primary care trust, or strategic health authority.

The Health Service Journal has already compiled a list of chairs and accountable officers, although some – including the accountable officer for Philip’s CCG – are “not known”.

You could then contact those to find out how far along the pre-application process they are: if they’ve appointed other board members, had meetings, and so on.

If you’re using any of the above tips or resources, please get in touch for help, or to pass on tips to others.