NHSE Health and Justice provider selection regime overview and training

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The NECS Healthcare Procurement team was contacted by the Head of NHS England Health and Justice for North East and Yorkshire requesting guidance in respect of new procurement legislation which came into force from 1 January 2024 for healthcare services. The new legislation will have a significant impact on the processes that commissioners must follow when commissioning services.

The Health and Justice (H&J) team is responsible for commissioning a range of healthcare services that support children and adults throughout the youth justice and criminal justice systems in England. NECS Healthcare Procurement team has worked closely with the H&J team over nine years, securing high quality services through robust procurement processes delivered in line with the Public Contract Regulations 2015 (as amended).

From 1 January 2024, the commissioning of services will be governed under The Healthcare Services (Provider Selection Regime) Regulations 2023. The aim of the new regulations is to allow more flexibility in selecting providers, better enable the development of stable partnerships and facilitate the delivery of integrated care and collaboration across the system. Commissioners will no longer be required to put all services out to competitive procurement therefore this is a huge shift in business as usual and it is important that commissioners are aware of their statutory duties  as well as the new flexibilities available to them.

To support the H&J team in understanding the scope of the new regulations and how this would relate specifically to the commissioning of services under their remit, it was recommended that bespoke face to face training developed by the Healthcare Procurement Team be delivered. The training included an overview of the legislation, the key changes and requirements and a session applying the legislation in practice.


Our response

The aim of the project was to provide the H&J Team with knowledge and understanding of the new procurement legislation. Key to this success was ensuring that the changes could be related to services which the team is responsible for commissioning.

In addition to an overview of the new legislation and scenario sessions, it was agreed that this would be an ideal opportunity to provide a lessons learnt exercise as part of the training day, using intelligence from procurement gathered over the previous 12 month period, intelligence gathered from other national teams and a focus on corporate social responsibility including climate change. The session also included an overview of the building blocks to successful procurement; key was ensuring that the session was interactive to keep the audience engaged.

It was important to involve other members of the Healthcare Procurement team in delivery of the session to ensure that procurement support was available at each of the tables throughout the day. This was also a fabulous opportunity for the team to meet commissioners face to face and foster working relationships after the long period of working on Teams as a result of Covid restrictions in previous years.

The scenario sessions were a particular success as they presented the audience with real life commissioning requirements and tasked them with determining the approach that could be taken in securing new services under the new provider selection regime. The sessions produced excellent discussion and thought provoking ideas.


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The session was attended by the majority of the H&J team situated throughout the North East and Yorkshire locality with commissioning, finance and contract management roles.

An introduction to the new legislation and an overview of lessons learnt from previous procurements has equipped the H&J Team with time to digest, consider and determine commissioning approaches for new services to be commissioned in 2024, maximising the flexibilities provided under the new legislation.

The event was a huge success and excellent feedback was provided from all members who attended, including additional feedback from the Director and Head of Health and Justice.

Future training sessions have been requested for the H&J team and the session has been recommended and endorsed by the NHSE Director of Health & Justice.

      “The commissioning landscape is changing with the introduction of the provider selection regime, understanding what this means and the opportunities it brings is a priority for us. NECS delivered a superb full day awareness raising session, enabling us to discuss the new legislation, scenarios and procurement best practice with knowledgeable colleagues helping us to begin to shape the future. This was a starting point, and we are looking forward to future sessions with NECS.”

      Matthew Groom

      Director of Health & Justice and Specialised Commissioning, NHS England North East and Yorkshire

      “Thank you and the team again for last week, it has prompted several other conversations already including with some of my national colleagues. Thank you to NECS for spending the day sharing educating about the new legislation and sharing lessons to continue to improve our procurement processes. As a team that undertakes lots of procurements, having dedicated time to learn with NECS colleagues was brilliant. The session was informative, enabled great discussion and I would highly recommend to other commissioning colleagues.”

      Dave King

      Head of Health & Justice, NHS England North East and Yorkshire