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The majority of National Health Service funding is allocated to NHS England, primarily for the commissioning of healthcare services from a range of primary and secondary care providers. NHS England allocates funding to clinical commissioning groups (CCGs). The model for CCG allocations is made up of three separate formulas – CCG core allocations, primary care and specialised services. Each formula is made up of a number of segments (for example, services covered by CCG core allocations include the segments maternity, mental health, prescribing, general and acute and supply needs). Each segment may be affected by the local population’s attributes, for example sex, age, morbidity, rates of disability, excess deaths and deprivation, plus wider factors associated with health needs including housing status and unemployment.
The statistical allocations formula is built up from data, which the NHS holds on individuals and their use of hospital services. This person-based approach helps ensure accuracy and takes account of local variation in health needs. Data for patients in general practitioner (GP) practices are linked to their treatment records, to calculate overall cost of care. The costs of health services for millions of real patients over a number of years are reviewed. Statistical analysis identifies factors, which can be used to predict future spending, for a given sex-age group in any GP practice in England (all data used is non-identifiable). Allocations reflect and build on information about spending patterns, but they do not report past spending patterns and therefore it is not possible to calculate costs per patient and so therefore not possible to calculate costs by gender over a given time period.