New NHS decision makers are fundamental to pharma success

After months of toing and froing, creating new health organisations, shadow working and streamlining, the new commissioning model in the NHS will officially start from April 2013. Many will argue that it has already started, with new leaders in the NHS trying to stamp their authority as early as possible.

The new commissioning structure will, and already is, starting to have a significant impact on the way decision making in the NHS is tackled. While an understanding of how the proposed commissioning boards at a national and regional level will work in reality is still limited, at a local level, through Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), the picture is much clearer.

CCGs, although in shadow form, are already starting to flex their muscles. They are looking to tighten up contracts with healthcare providers to ensure they are getting better value for money and services that are delivered how they want them to be.

With responsibility for the majority of the NHS budget, GPs now find themselves with even more power. Many will find themselves in the enviable position of having the money to commission health services and the ability to provide them.

This new commissioning role will create opportunities for pharma and now is the time to start building relationships with CCG leads as they will be looking to shape how healthcare looks in their locality. With over 200 CCGs the task is huge and careful planning is needed.

This is only the first step in building stronger relationships with the NHS. As the roles and responsibilities of the national and regional commissioning boards become clearer, so will the next actions needed by pharma.

Grant joined Aurora to support Clinical Commissioning Groups and Commissioning Support Services during service redesign to engage and consult the right people using new techniques including digital media. He will also be offering issues management advice during an increased time of change. He has experience of working in communications and engagement within the NHS at a strategic, commissioning and provider level.

If you would like to know how pharma can be involved in joint planning with the NHS, please get in touch on 0207 148 0442 or email

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