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The Approach to Clinical Categories and Clinical Pathways

A Health Procurement Strategy Innovation and Best Practice Group publication from ITW Networks.
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We get a lot from it. I met a Trust Medical Director here and we have since followed up and are now working on several projects together.
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Clinical categories and Clinical pathways

Andrew Rudd

Article written by: Andrew Rudd, Programme Facilitator
Friday 14th November 2014

The approach to Clinical Categories and Clinical Pathways is an initiative to fundamentally re-think clinical engagement in the procurement of medical devices and the subsequent relationship with the device industry.

Clinical categories and Clinical pathways

Quite rightly, clinicians must make the right choices to ensure patients receive the best treatment and outcomes. However, these decisions are sometimes made without full knowledge of costs, prices and competitive options.

This initiative aims to ensure clinicians and budget holders are fully equipped with the information to help them make the right choices, both in terms of outcomes and value for money.

Andy Brown Project Lead at the Department of Health described the proposed strategy for developing a clinical category approach to Orthopaedics, Cardiology and Renal. The focus is on an integrated approach with clinicians, procurement and commissioning working together to ensure clinical buy-in and a co-ordinated implementation.

Andy empasised the importance of a clinical lead and a clinical imperative for each category and illustrated this with the example of Professor Tim Briggs who had led an initiative in orthopaedics described at http://www.gettingitrightfirsttime.com/ .

The 'Getting it right first time' report considered the state of Englands orthopaedic surgery provision and suggested that changes can be made to improve pathways of care, patient experience and outcomes with significant cost savings. These findings were supported by data and evidence.

Each of the national clinical strategy areas would have a clinical lead appointed and clinical groups would be assembled to lead strategy and implementation.

Key points noted by the attendees at the best practice group were -

  • The importance of a clinical lead and clinical engagement
  • The need for data and evidence
  • A focus on enhancing the clinical/patient pathway when considering products and procedures
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It was a very well organised and facilitated event and quality of the discussions that came out were excellent.
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