How we engage in commissioning

How we engage in commissioning diagram


Commissioning is all about planning and improving, consideration of impact and recognition of need.

Involving the public helps us to understand people’s needs, and to prioritise those people who experience the poorest health outcomes – enabling us to improve access and reduce health inequalities.

Our staff use an engagement toolkit and plan template designed to help CCG commissioners fulfil their statutory duties and involve patients and the public effectively and systematically.

Where do we want to get to? 

Our aspirations continue to be to:

  • Recognise that patient and public involvement is good for patients, good for services and the right way to do business;

  • Have patients as partners;

  • Put patients at the heart of all the CCG does;

  • Keep the public informed with clear and consistent messages;

  • Acknowledge the need for a systematic approach that is clear, coordinated, accessible and which is embedded across the organisation.

Working with our Partners

The Sussex CCGs are committed to the principles of working with key partners to enhance the understanding of health and care needs within our population.  Through linking with key partners’ engagement activities, the CCGs are able to maximise resource, increase reach, co-ordinate impact and minimise public engagement fatigue. 

Our key partners include:

    • Healthwatch East Sussex 
    • County and District councils
    • Local Voluntary and Community Sector organisations
    • Providers – East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust, Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust, Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, South East Coast Ambulance. 
Working with our Providers

It is important for the CCG to work closely with local NHS trusts to understand the experience of patients, and where care can be improved.

The CCG meets regularly with local trusts to share what people are telling both organisations about local health care, to discuss improvements that have been made as a result of patient and resident feedback, and plan how local people can be involved in shaping local health care.

This includes engagement reports, key themes from patient and public engagement, complaints and patient advice and liaison service reports, and friends and family tests. See an example of the Q1 2019 monitoring report for the i-Rock service in Hastings.

The CCG are given assurance that the services we commission from our local NHS trusts have methods in place to involve the public and act on feedback that they receive:

Joint East Sussex Communications and Engagement Steering Group

Under the East Sussex Better Together programme, a group comprising of communications and engagement leads from the CCGs, County Council, East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust and Healthwatch was formed to oversee and co-ordinate communications and Involvement activity, exploring opportunities for collaborative and aligned working.  

This group continues to meet bi monthly, and since April 2019 has considered: 

    • Commissioning Reform discussions
    • Winter planning
    • Collaborative working on Health and Wellbeing
    • Reviewing the outputs from the Our Health and Care, our FUTURE engagement exercise 
    • The communications and Involvement strategy in response to the localised Long Term Plan
    • Discussion about engagement in Primary Care Networks   
    • The draft Engagement model and governance
    • Drafting an Adult Social Care & Health single comms plan for activities and campaigns that cross over
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