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The NHS Core List – next phase offers national savings of up to £2.87m*

Tuesday 19 July 2016

The NHS spends over £22bn (about 30% of its overall operating cost) every year on goods and services. NHS Supply Chain, under the guidance of the NHS Business Services Authority, is tasked with utilising this considerable combined purchasing power through product standardisation and rationalisation. Achieving greater commitments of spend through central aggregation will save money that can be put back into front-line services.

The NHS Core List programme aims to achieve best value by reducing the number of “like for like” products that the NHS purchases. Through NHS Supply Chain the programme is focused on reducing product and price variation at a sub category or product line level, through commitment to one supplier. This allows the NHS to commit to larger volumes of a smaller range of products, which in turn allows suppliers to provide improved prices to the NHS as greater economies of scale in manufacturing can be achieved.

NHS Core List activity supports the transparency agenda and works toward the single national pricing model for the NHS. It underpins The Operational Productivity Review by Lord Carter which highlighted the benefits of reducing spend by collaboration and consolidating purchasing power, moving to alternative products which are clinically acceptable and supporting national procurement strategies.

NHS Core List concentrates NHS demand and commitment through a mini competition process. Only products that achieve the best value are included on the NHS Supply Chain Framework Agreement. Upon award, unsuccessful suppliers will be delisted from the NHS Supply Chain online catalogue and their products/services will be unavailable for purchase through NHS Supply Chain. This differs from the DH Core List pilot in 2014 where unsuccessful products were still available for customers to purchase.

The next phase of NHS Core List opportunities which start in August will enable cash releasing savings of up to £2.87m*. These include:

Single Use Tourniquets – nationally available from August 2016
Cash releasing savings of up to £579k (38%) on Single Use Band Type Tourniquets are being made available across NHS trusts, based on current sales.

Examination Gloves – nationally available from September 2016
Significant price reductions have been secured on Examination Gloves (vinyl: non-sterile stretched and non-sterile stretched pigmented, latex: sterile and non-sterile). These reductions are expected to deliver savings of £1.2m (28.5%) nationally to the NHS.

Urine Drainage Bags – nationally available from September 2016
£1.1m (47%) of national savings have been generated for Urine Drainage Bags (2 Litre Bedside Urine Bags and 500ml Leg Bags).

For procurement professionals, using the NHS Core List provides the most straightforward option for driving out cost when purchasing everyday hospital goods and services, to potentially make more money available for frontline services.

Since 2014, the NHS Core List programme has delivered £5.4m cash releasing savings back to the NHS**.

* The headline £2.87m saving is based on:
Single Use Tourniquets - maximum switch savings on currently committed volume annualised generating maximum savings of £579k
Examination Gloves – maximum switch savings on currently committed volume annualised generating maximum savings of £1.2m
Urine Drainage Bags – maximum switch savings on currently committed volume annualised generating maximum savings of £1.1m

** The £5.4m cumulative NHS Core List saving is based on:
Stationery, Underpads, Exam Gloves, Wipes, X-Ray Detectable Swabs recorded savings from November 2014 to May 2016


Media enquiries:

Jennie Brice-Boutard
07714 043391
Joanna Morrison
07776 457201

Notes to editors

About NHS Supply Chain

All information in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

NHS Supply Chain is operated by DHL and managed by the NHS Business Services Authority. It supports the National Health Service (NHS) and other healthcare organisations in England and Wales by providing end to end supply chain solutions.

The organisation was formed in 2006 from the NHS Logistics Authority and parts of the NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency (NHS PASA). The initial contract which was due to expire in October 2016 has been extended for a further two years until October 2018.

NHS Supply Chain is working closely with the NHSBSA, to build on the savings already achieved to deliver £300m of the opportunities for procurement efficiency savings as highlighted in Lord Carter’s interim report: Review of operational efficiency in NHS providers.

NHS Supply Chain manages the sourcing, delivery and supply of healthcare products and food for over 1,000 NHS trusts and healthcare organisations. It provides a single point of access to over 316,000 nationally available, transactable lines ranging from bandages to sutures, from gloves to implants, and surgical equipment. In addition, it can help you plan your investment in medical capital equipment such as MRI scanners, linear accelerators and patient monitors.

Its management of the procurement process negates an NHS organisation’s need to tender through the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU). Costs can also be reduced through its one-route solution that consolidates all products onto one invoice and delivery.

To ensure that its products are fit for today’s healthcare market, NHS Supply Chain works with suppliers of all sizes to ensure its range embraces high quality and innovative products; and engages with clinicians, the Department of Health and academic institutions to make sure that it is aware of the current requirements and latest developments in clinical practice.

NHS Supply Chain’s product areas include:
• Theatres
• Dental
• Audiology
• Catering, including food
• Infection control
• Orthopaedics
• Rehabilitation
• Capital equipment, including finance and maintenance.

Based in Alfreton, Derbyshire, UK, the business employs over 2,400 staff across seven sites.

Delivering value to the NHS