This site is intended for health professionals only

Management manuals outline how to save NHS £2.4bn a year

7 December 2009

Share this article

The NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement has published two new guides aimed at commissioners and providers on how to use the Better Care, Better Value (BCBV) Indicators to increase productivity and capacity for their organisations.

The guides are 10-step manuals for managers that bring together knowledge and best practice gained from the top BCBV performers over the last three years to provide a blueprint for other NHS organisations to follow.

Public spending will come under increasing pressure – from 2011, NHS funding will not increase at the rate seen in recent years.

The NHS Institute says that if the NHS is to continue delivering high-quality care it will need to make savings of up to £20bn over three years. It estimates that if every NHS organisation were to improve its performance to match that of the top quartile in each BCBV indicator, the NHS could potentially make savings of up to £2.4bn a year according to the most recently published data.

The indicators, which are published on a quarterly basis, provide a quick snapshot of all primary care and acute trust performance and are intended to help NHS organisations see where to improve their productivity and clinical effectiveness.

For example, by comparing the length of an average hospital stay between the most efficient trusts and the least effective, NHS organisations can help iron out variations, paving the way for greater efficiency savings and better patient care.

NHS Hillingdon has used the BCBV indicators to identify potential savings of £20m over the next three to five years.

Professor Yi Mien Koh, Chief Executive for NHS Hillingdon, said: “The BCBV indicators provide benchmark information that helps inform our dialogue with acute providers and GPs about the areas to target for efficiency improvements and service redesign.

“We are currently working jointly with our hospital, community services and the council on improving discharge arrangements and support aimed at avoiding everyday hospital admissions.”

The NHS Institute’s new guides recommend 10 steps all commissioners and providers can take to unlock benefits. These include using the indicators to understand the size of the opportunity for your health system, connecting with your providers or commissioners and getting board engagement and commitment.

NHS Institute