Sussex MSK Partnership East: Sharing an innovative approach

June 2019

At the end of 2018, GGI was approached by Sussex MSK Partnership East to undertake a review of the way the partnership has developed in a stressed healthcare provision environment with long-standing structural deficits and considerable regulator interest.

At the end of 2018, GGI was approached by Sussex MSK Partnership East to undertake a review of the way the partnership has developed in a stressed healthcare provision environment with long-standing
structural deficits and considerable regulator interest. In this context, GGI considers the progress made by Sussex MSK Partnership East as a narrative worth sharing across the NHS, and an independent view on the service model and its approach would provide valuable lessons for NHS boards and decision makers.

This report looks to identify the themes that have allowed this partnership to flourish, where others have struggled to show improvements. We have used the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s (IHI) concept of a ‘triple aim’ of improved patient experience, improved health outcomes and improved efficiency, to frame our deliberations. These have led to four clear themes and one overriding lesson.

These themes;
1. Initial commissioning process, effective use of prime contractor model and the building of a strong alliance of organisations.
2. Strong leadership, a shared vision and a healthy appetite of innovation and risk.
3. A patient centred approach to enable continuous improvements and consistency.
4. Building a collaborative partnership to deliver an effective integrated care system.

This endeavour was driven by a need to deliver an improved service for the people in East Sussex and reduce the cost of the service, which was at that point a national outlier. The partnership has achieved
these goals and has been able to deliver a value-based health care to the people of East Sussex. The one thing that has enabled the four themes to work is a shared vision from all the stakeholders in the
partnership, which puts improving patient outcomes at the very heart of its operations. The report has triangulated all the information and evidence gathered, including discussions involving wider stakeholders to gain a more rounded picture, and test the ideas with peers from other areas to help provide further detail and definition, in identifying the useful lessons for broader sharing in this final report.

This has highlighted several factors which have facilitated the emergence of these four themes, which are set out in the report and include; the strong leadership, the increased status of the allied professionals, patient focus, plus consistent feedback and communication. These have all led to a successful ‘left’ shift in service to a conservative community approach, which many CCGs have found difficult to commission and providers problematic to achieve.

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The Author
Andy Payne

Andy Payne

Associate

Andy Payne