Patrick Keady

CCG Authorisation : wave 1 lessons



If you are helping your CCG apply for Authorisation in waves 2, 3 and 4, or just interested to see how other wave 1 CCGs are faring so far, then the “Wave 1 CCGs Lessons Learned Report” is for you.


The report summarises the evidence provided by the Wave 1 CCGs.  And it is aimed at helping waves 2-4 CCGs prepare and submit their application for authorization.


While the key messages could seem a little mundane, acting on them will help introduce an element of certainty.


  • 30 – limit the number of uploaded documents to 30. Carefully consider the added benefit of each additional documents that you are planning to submit. Does the new document add evidence, not already covered in one of the mandatory documents?  Will the assessor understand the purpose of the document ?  Where in the document are they likely to find the evidence that they are looking for ?


  • Uploading – give yourself plenty of time to upload the documents and ensure that they are congruent in terms of naming (filename and front page), numbering (for signposting), searchable (upload .pdf and MS Office files only) and ownership (CCG name, not PCT name).


  • Less is more
    • Minutes – a maximum of 3 examples of minutes for each relevant committee or group and minutes that best demonstrate how the CCG has met the threshold. The exception is multi-professional groups where Assessors want to see a range of minutes.  Only submit the original electronic versions, not scanned copies.  Include names and job titles of all members and attendees.
    • Constitution – include these documents : complaints policy/procedure, safeguarding policy, schedule of how patient feedback is captured, latest register of interests, conflict of interest policy (communicated to staff members), information governance self-assessment, quality (reports, minutes, notes), configuration self-assessment and supporting letter from LA or SHA
    • Complaints Policy – CCG branded policy highlighting where the aspects of the threshold have been met.


  • Key documents that could do better
    • Communication and Engagement Strategy : single document, clear action plan and evidence of steps already taken
    • Organisational Development Plan : clear assessment of leadership and organizational capability and capacity. Description of succession planning
    • Draft Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy : provide the document and two sets of minutes showing CCG involvement
    • Letters of Support : Evidence of election process for Chair, or letters from members stating that they support the new Chair
    • List of 2012-13 Contracts : List of relevant signed Provider contracts, contract negotiation and management arrangements for delegated responsibility in 2012/13 and planned for 2013/14.  Scanned copies of contracts are not required
    • Organisational structure : how the structure addresses the CCG’s responsibilities and local priorities, details of Commissioning Support Service capacity
    • Equality and Diversity Plan
    • Positive assessments outcomes
    • Draft Joint Strategic Needs Assessment : Memorandum of Understanding between the CCG and Local Authority
    • Health and Wellbeing Board : three sets of minutes showing sustained engagement and copies of key CCG strategy presentations delivered at meetings
    • List of collaborative arrangements : for commissioning including Local Authorities and neighbouring CCGs
    • SLA with assured support provider where appropriate : MoU if SLA not completed
    • Risk Management Framework : policy, assurance framework, risk register, QIPP governance and risk management, safeguarding
    • Finance arrangements : completed governance toolkit and evidence of any finance arrangements there are in the threshold but not covered by the toolkit


  • Well-planned plans
    • Cluster plans to include sufficient reference to the CCG being assessed
    • Stakeholder engagement sections to include what has already been achieved and what is planned
    • Governance, decision-making and planning arrangements – clearly set out how quality is a priority and how clinical views are foremost
    • Clearly set out what it is that CCGs hope to achieve by March 2015
    • Clearly state if the CCG is on track to meet the 2012/13 plan (criterion 3.1.4 B)
    • If the CCG is planning to work with other CCGs, provide details of the arrangements and how


  • Signposting : when done properly, sufficient signposting will allow assessors to quickly find the information that they are looking for.  Therefore it is recommended to :
    • Fill in every signpost
    • Make sure the signposting is concise
    • Make sure that it is relevant : quality over quantity
    • Take the time to explain the signpost


Further details are available in ‘Wave 1 CCGs Lessons Learned Report’ which is downloadable from the Authorisation Portal / Knowledge Management System (KMS).


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