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Mid Cheshire NHS Hospitals Foundation Trust save £80,000 by Switching to NHS Supply Chain Home Delivery Service

20 April 2023

“NHS Supply Chain made the whole process very easy, and the implementation team were extremely supportive throughout.”

Claire Smith – Clinical Lead Community Bladder and Bowel Service, Mid Cheshire NHS Hospitals Foundation Trust


The Community Bladder and Bowel team at Mid Cheshire NHS Hospitals Foundation Trust provides expert care and advice for approximately 3,400 patients in their own homes and care homes across central Cheshire.

The Challenge

The products and delivery service at Mid Cheshire had been outsourced to a private sector company for many years. As part of a review of their continence provision, the procurement and clinical teams recognised an opportunity to drive costs down by transferring their Home Delivery Service to NHS Supply Chain and switching the products to an alternative supplier.

The trust’s Clinical Procurement team were instrumental in providing in-depth financial evaluations to complement the rigorous product testing carried out by the clinical team prior to the implementation. This joint approach ensured that the new solution would not only be fit for purpose but would benefit both patients and the trust itself.

The Solution

NHS Supply Chain’s HDS Implementation team worked very closely with trust stakeholders and the new supplier to ensure a smooth and seamless transition, with minimal disruption to the clinical team and patients over the 12-week implementation period. During the project Helen Ansell and Claire Smith, procurement and clinical leads respectively, were fully involved in the process, making important contributions and decisions during the weekly progress calls and ensuring the project remained on track from a trust perspective.

As change can sometimes cause worry to patients and care home staff, a joint communication plan guaranteed that they were kept informed about the change to both their products and the delivery service. This ensured that any uncertainty around the transition to NHS Supply Chain that patients may have had, were minimised.

Following the implementation, the trust was assigned a dedicated Account Support Manager, Lloyd Miller, who is the first point of contact for any service-related queries and meets with the trust on a quarterly basis.

 “The quarterly review meetings with Lloyd, our Account Support Manager, are brilliant and the reports he provides clearly show when spend has gone up or down. This enables us to exercise more control over spend, product split and usage, and explore ways of reducing our expenditure. For example, we were able to quickly identify that our spend for Paediatrics patients was above the national average, which led to a product review, and a subsequent reduction in costs”.

Claire Smith – Clinical Lead Community Bladder and Bowel Service, Mid Cheshire NHS Hospitals Foundation Trust.

Lloyd added that “Working with the trust’s procurement and clinical leads, Helen Ansell and Claire Smith, has been a pleasure from the outset. Our conversations have given me a good understanding of not just how the service works but also how we can play a part in helping the bladder and bowel team to provide a 5-star service to their patients, while also keeping a close eye on spend. We meet regularly on a quarterly basis and review product usage, service levels, and expenditure and by using data extracted from HDS Online so we are easily able to identify any areas where cost efficiencies can be introduced”.

Lloyd Miller – Account Support Manager, NHS Supply Chain  

The Results

Mid Cheshire NHS Hospitals Foundation Trust was one of several in-flight projects that were onboarded by the HDS Implementation team at the same time.  By working closely with all stakeholders, it was possible to ensure that the project met the 12-week timescale and delivered real, tangible benefits to the trust and their patients. The project benefitted from a saving of £80,000 for the trust.

Helen Ansell, procurement lead at the trust added ‘’This was a challenging project that took place during the Covid pandemic, but despite some obstacles, constant collaborative working between the Clinical Service, Mid Cheshire Procurement and NHS Supply Chain ensured a fantastic end-result and realised significant financial benefits for the service”.

Next Steps

Please get in touch with our experienced Hospital Care Team. We would welcome an initial discussion to better understand your current service requirements and to discuss the potential savings and benefits of the NHS Supply Chain disposable continence products framework.

Stuart Milhench

Home Delivery Service Manager

07511 701 225

Matthew Hitchins

Home Delivery Service Business Manager

07702 826 351