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Trusted Customer events inform customers on savings and category strategies

Monday 23 January 2017

NHS Heads of Procurement from across the Midlands came together recently in support of an event run jointly by the NHSBSA and NHS Supply Chain to hear how the NHS can access a number of significant savings programmes and how the NHS Trusted Customer programme has helped shape development of the 24 Category strategies.

The first Trusted Customer event was held just before Christmas at the Alfreton offices of NHS Supply Chain. It is part of a series of events, being held across the country for the NHS, to present the Trusted Customer programme. Hosted by Andy Harris, Procurement Delivery Manager – Clinical, from the NHSBSA and Geoff Roberts, Chair of the West Midlands Head of Procurement Forum, the event welcomed a large number of our NHS colleagues around the table.

Key updates included:

  • NHS England High-Cost Tariff-Excluded Devices programme
    The latest news on the NHS England High-Cost Tariff-Excluded Devices (HCTED) programme was shared by Lee Hirsch, Head of Specialist Service Delivery at NHS Supply Chain. NHS England introduced a new nationwide system for purchasing HCTDs used in specialised services back in April 2016 and its implementation will see savings of over £60 million reinvested back into the NHS in its first two years.
  • Category Strategies and the Trusted Customer programme - sharing best practice
    This section showcased the work and activities surrounding an important NHSBSA programme that underpins the journey towards the next £150m savings. Using the knowledge and expertise of NHS Trusts and Senior Buyers within NHS Supply Chain, updates were given on:

- Dressings & Wound care by Ruth Annington, Senior Buyer and University Hospitals of North Midlands
- Electrodes by and Christine Hinnings, Senior Buyer and Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust
- Respiratory & Suction Solutions by and Dan Blackwell, Senior Buyer and University Hospitals Leicester

  • Nationally Contracted Product Programme (NCP)
    Jonathan Kaye, Head of Core Range at NHS Supply Chain gave the delegates an update on the NHS Improvement programme. Run through NHS Supply Chain, NCP is focussed on reducing product and price variation at a sub category or product line level, through commitment to minimal suppliers. Jonathan went on to explain that Trusts will be able to adopt lower cost alternative products that will deliver significant savings, relatively quickly, without compromising on quality or patient care. He also shared how clinical evaluations from the NHS Clinical Evaluation Team (NHS CET) will be utilised for those products which are everyday healthcare consumables.

Following lunch and an opportunity to network, other key updates were shared by Andrew De Whalley, Engagement Lead at the Department of Health and Alan Lowe, Interim Head of Information Governance at Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

The meeting closed with a tour of NHS Supply Chain’s Alfreton Distribution Centre.

Feedback from this event and a further North Eastern regional session was good with 81% of North Eastern attendees rating the event as good/excellent. Many participants spoke of the “precise presentations and informative sessions” with “lots of audience participation and well informed answers”.

To register to attend future Trusted Customer events during 2017 visit:

Delivering value to the NHS