17 August 2010,

Hull - Health Improvements Rated Best in Country

Health officials in Hull are celebrating after being ranked as the best in the country in a recent skills assessment.

The Health Service Journal has published a performance table which ranks NHS Hull 1st out of 144* primary care trusts (PCTs) for improvements in Year 2 of the NHS World Class Commissioning (WCC) assessment.

As commissioners of local health services and leaders of their respective health communities, PCTs are expected to demonstrate a range of skills which enable them to source high quality, value-for-money services for patients and the public. These skills, which include patient and public involvement, working with doctors and nurses, prioritising investment and promoting innovation, are deemed essential to deliver 'world class' healthcare to local people.

Over the past year, NHS Hull's improvement in a total of 11 skill areas, plus key governance areas of finance, strategy and board, has been significant.

Now, having weighted the results, the Health Service Journal places NHS Hull firmly at the top of the improvements table, a result which Chief Executive, Christopher Long, is extremely proud of. He says:

"This result is an outstanding achievement for NHS Hull, and demonstrates the real commitment and determination of our staff to improving the health and well-being of local people.

"World Class Commissioning is designed first and foremost to measure our skills as commissioners of services, ensuring that we have the knowledge, the local understanding and the capability to provide local people with the services they need.

"The better we are at using what patients and clinicians tell us to source high quality, cost-effective services, for example, the better this is for local people and the more likely we are to make in-roads into some of Hull's big public health issues such as heart disease and cancer."

Christopher continues:

"Whilst each and every member of staff at NHS Hull should be praised for their efforts, we certainly couldn't have achieved this without the support of our partners in the local health economy.

"Good health is about more than just being treated when you're unwell, and we have relied in many ways upon the help of public, private, voluntary and community sector partners to raise our game and continue improving our service for local people."

(Ends)

Notes to editors

About commissioning and WCC

'Commissioning' is the process through which Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) assess local health needs, identify the services required to best meet those needs, and then buy those services from different healthcare providers.

'World Class Commissioning' (WCC) uses best practice from this country, and from health systems around the world, to help PCTs commission services in the most effective way. It is designed to ensure delivery of better services which are more closely matched to local needs, resulting in better quality of care, improved health and well-being and a reduction in health inequalities.

WCC results

* The performance table referred to can be found in the 12 August edition of the Health Service Journal. Data was published for 144 of the country's 152 Primary Care Trusts.

NHS Hull's individual WCC results report for 2009/10 can be found online at