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To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the Answer of 11 February 2016 to Question 26284, on what date NHS England took the decision to seek external consultancy support for the development of its clinical commissioning policies; whether the contract for external consultancy support for the development of NHS England's clinical commissioning policies was competitively tendered; who in NHS England took the decision to award the contract to Deloitte; what discussions his officials have had with NHS England on the contract with Deloitte since 1 January 2016; what the subject of those discussions was; and which clinical commissioning policies are being developed by NHS England.
NHS England decided to seek external support to supplement in-house capacity to deliver its clinical commissioning policy programme for specialised services in early 2015. The recommendation for contract award followed consideration by the Efficiency Controls Committee, which is a subcommittee of NHS England's Board. This was subject to ministerial sign off.
Following the completion and approval of a business case by NHS England’s Efficiency Controls Committee, a competitive tendering process was undertaken within the Department of Health’s Framework Agreement. A contract award was subsequently made in September 2015, following ministerial approval.
NHS England has not published a list of the clinical commissioning policies under development in 2015/16. However, individual clinical commissioning policy proposals are made available through NHS England’s website once they have met NHS England’s governance gateways and have been agreed as ready for public consultation, together with a range of supporting information including a clinical evidence review and impact assessment.
While the Department approved the initial procurement of these services, they have not been involved in official discussions with NHS England regarding the contract since 1 January 2016.