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Statement following NHS England Quality of Leadership Improvement and Assessment Framework outcome

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NHS England has today published 2018/19 annual assurance ratings, known as Improvement and Assessment Framework (IAF) ratings for all Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in England.

These ratings provide a benchmark for CCGs, so they can compare themselves to others and assess where they need to focus. It also gives national and local regulators and partners an indication of where more support is needed.

There are four main areas that each CCG is measured against; Better Care, Better Health, Sustainability and Quality of Leadership.

The overall IAF rating for all four Clinical Commissioning Groups in Cheshire (NHS Eastern Cheshire CCG, NHS South Cheshire CCG, NHS Vale Royal CCG and NHS West Cheshire CCG) is “Good”.

Considering individual domains in particular, the overall Quality of Leadership rating for all four Cheshire CCGs is “Good”. This indicator assesses the quality of a CCG’s leadership, how CCGs work with partners and the governance arrangements that CCGs have in place to ensure they act with integrity.

The Patient and Community Engagement indicator assesses how well CCGs involve the public in commissioning; ensuring effective patient and public participation in the development of plans to ensure services meet the needs of local communities and tackle health inequalities. The rating for NHS Eastern Cheshire CCG, NHS South Cheshire CCG and NHS Vale Royal CCG is “Green”, and NHS West Cheshire CCG achieved “Green Star".

NHS England has also confirmed that they have removed both NHS South Cheshire CCG and NHS West Cheshire CCG from the legal powers of Direction that both CCGs were placed under in 2016.

Clare Watson, Accountable Officer for the four Cheshire CCGs said: “The overall Quality of Leadership assessment rating of 'Good' across all CCGs confirms our clear vision and ambition to continue to deliver high quality and innovative care for our local population.

"Being placed under Directions required NHS South Cheshire and NHS West Cheshire CCGs to get a grip on our finances and balance the books, as well as improve our relationship with our providers and wider partners. This very positive movement out of Directions demonstrates our commitment to do just that.

"I would like to thank everyone involved for all their hard work and passion. I feel very proud and lucky to be working in Cheshire.”

Dr Chris Ritchieson, GP Chair for NHS West Cheshire CCG, said: “Our annual assurance rating for both Quality of Leadership and Patient and Community engagement is a reflection of the proactive work of the CCGs - member practices and staff - in taking a strong grip of our finances and performance, as well as close working and involvement with our local communities in order to improve outcomes for local people.

"This is incredibly positive and clearly demonstrates how effectively both the clinicians and managers of the four Cheshire CCGs are performing in their leadership roles.”

Dr Jonathan Griffiths, GP Chair for NHS Vale Royal CCG, said: “Patients are at the heart of the work we do and our positive scores across Cheshire are reflective of our emphasis and focus on strong robust engagement and involvement with our patients, public and partners. We believe that by working together we can be outstanding, empowering our local communities by giving an opportunity for each individual to be involved and making engagement meaningful and valuable.”

Dr Andrew Wilson, GP Chair for both NHS Eastern Cheshire CCG and South Cheshire CCG, said: “The fact that we have positive ratings across all four Cheshire CCGs shows we have a strong focus on our relationships across partners and the wider health and care system. It also reinforces our commitment to working with our local communities, and I’m delighted that we have received recognition of our ambition to work collectively and collaboratively to ensure the population of Cheshire is getting the best possible health and care outcomes.”