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Proposals for 2015/16 tariff revealed

Proposals for 2015/16 tariff revealed


Proposed changes to the NHS payment system could encourage faster take-up of innovative care, NHS England and Monitor believe. 

The changes are designed to maintain “tight financial discipline” while also promoting high-quality care. 

Commissioners and providers would have to achieve an additional “efficiency factor” of 3-5% savings, under the proposals. 

Other proposals for the 2015/16 national tariff framework include: 

 - Reforming payment structures for urgent and emergency care. 

- Developing guidance on how to set local prices which share risk between commissioners and providers. 

- A heart failure best practice tariff to encourage better outcomes for patients. 

But Rob Webster, chair of the NHS Confederation said that “how” the NHS spends money is almost as important as “how much” it spends. 

Payment mechanisms that perpetuate the status quo will not support the scale of change needed to improve the health service, according to Webster. 

He said: “It is vital we see rapid reform of the NHS payment system to enable us to reshape and improve care. We need to develop mechanisms that support delivery of integrated services and which reward outcome rather than outputs.” 

Ric Marshall, director of pricing at health sector regulator Monitor, said: “The changes we are proposing will incentivise the NHS to make necessary improvements in quality and efficiency so that it continues to meet patient needs and expectations within available resources.

“Commissioners and providers will be able to make better decisions about what services to commission and provide for their patients.”

Sam Higginson, director of strategic finance at NHS England, said: “Pricing and incentives have an important enabling role. For 2015/16 we are making a number of significant changes where we already have the evidence to do so. We are also actively encouraging local innovation in clinical priority areas, which will allow us to gather evidence we can then use to inform pricing in the future.” 

NHS England and Monitor are gathering feedback to the proposals. The engagement document is available to view online


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