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CSUs join to form service network


16 January 2014

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Four commissioning support units (CSUs) have established a network in order to make it easier for clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to buy services. 
Following discussions, NHS Arden, Greater East Midlands, North Yorkshire and Humber, West and South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw CSUs have formed a “strategic alliance”. 
Work is now underway to establish how the alliance will work in practice. 

Four commissioning support units (CSUs) have established a network in order to make it easier for clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to buy services. 
Following discussions, NHS Arden, Greater East Midlands, North Yorkshire and Humber, West and South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw CSUs have formed a “strategic alliance”. 
Work is now underway to establish how the alliance will work in practice. 
A statement from the organisations claims the change will deliver “market-leading, cost-effective services that meet the needs of our customers”. 
The alliance has been formed in order to maximise the CSUs ability to secure a place on NHS England’s recently announced lead provider framework. 
The optional framework provides a way for CCGs to procure services quickly, by choosing to buy some, or all support services from one or more suppliers on the framework. 
The CSU statement reads: “CSUs across the country have been talking to each other about how they can work together to enrich their offer to CCGs and to generate greater efficiencies in order to maximise their ability to secure a place on the framework.” 
Between April and December 2013, close to 70% of all NHS contracts were won by private firms, a campaign group has claimed. 
The NHS Support Federation said that 39 out of 57 contracts went to private organisations. 
The group, which opposes a competitive market, revealed that 15 of the 57 contracts went to the NHS, two went to charities and one was shared between an NHS and a non-NHS provider. 

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