Commissioning in the NHS is the process of ensuring that the health and care services provided effectively meet the needs of the population. It is a complex process with responsibilities ranging from assessing population needs, prioritising health outcomes, procuring products and services, and managing service providers.

Our commissioning Blogs

Moving on from home for adults with learning disabilities: families’ experiences

Home sweet home dog

What are the experiences of families who are supporting their adult sons and daughters with learning disabilities to move on to their own homes?

Here, Mandy Johnson looks at a study, which sets out to answer that question.

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End-of-life care for people with learning disabilities. Views of service-users and family carers

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People with learning disabilities are living longer than ever before, so more people are likely to need palliative care services and end-of-life care.

Here, Fawn Harrad looks at a study, which set out to listen specifically to the views of people with a learning disability and family carers in receipt of palliative care services.

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The Goldies: a community-based singing programme for successful ageing


In her debut blog, Jane Greenstock considers research on how community arts programmes such as singing clubs may contribute to prevention for older people.

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High cost placements for people with learning disabilities and complex and challenging needs

Compass and map

People with learning disabilities who have complex and challenging needs may find themselves placed in specialist services, sometimes distant from family and local support networks, often at high cost to the commissioners.

Here Ruth Northway looks at the findings of a survey of commissioning teams in south east England reporting on the nature and costs of such placements.

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E-markets and micros: evidence for the future of social care?


Sarah Carr takes an unusual step of appraising a ‘think tank’ research report on e-marketplaces for social care and discusses the work in relation to the broader context of evidence-based policy.

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Trying targets: did Local Area Agreements support social cohesion?


Jenny Fisher asks if the Local Area Agreement policy intervention and associated targets helped with social cohesion and offers useful pointers for further reading on the topic.

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How can commissioners improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people?


Alison Turner summarises the Department of Health’s Future in Mind report, which builds on the work of the Children & Young People’s Mental Health Taskforce and sets out a vision for increased coordination and collaboration to improve mental health and wellbeing in children and young people.

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Faith, charity and public sector delivery: a match made in heaven?


Robin Miller examines a US research study on faith based organisations delivering social care services and considers what the findings might mean for the UK context.

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Mental health support for older adults needs to improve


Dave Steele summarises an NIHR funded mixed methods study that concludes we don’t know much about how we should support older adults with mental health problems, except to say that we should be doing better.

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Commissioning to address mental health ethnic inequalities


Caroline De Brun highlights the new guidance for commissioners of mental health services for people from black and minority ethnic communities, produced by the Joint Commissioning Panel for Mental Health.

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