The must read stories and biggest talking points in health policy

STPs need a ‘CIP’

STP areas have been asked to produce a “credible implementation plan” to turn their proposals into action, and reconcile them with contracts and financial targets.

A letter sent to STP leaders this week said the Five Year Forward View delivery plan, expected to be published at the end of the month, would request that “each area has developed a credible implementation plan now that the contracting round is nearly complete”.

“This plan will need to show how areas will manage activity and achieve the efficiencies in organisations’ contracts. Implementation plans will also need to reconcile these contracts with STPs where this has not been done already,” it added.

The timetable and format for the plans is yet to be decided, but they are expected to be developed over the next few months, and to refine actions that will be taken in the short-to-medium term. More details will be set out when the delivery plan is published.

According to the letter, the 5YFV delivery plan “will set out what the NHS will deliver in the next two to three years, within the resources available”. It will cover urgent and emergency care, including use of technology, and it will “describe the hard choices we will need to make to live within our means”.

NHS Providers chief executive Chris Hopson told HSJ the plan needed to do a number of things, but “first, it needs to set out with brutal honesty what the NHS can now deliver if the spending review NHS funding levels are fixed. This will involve some very difficult re-prioritisation decisions.”

Pay details revealed

The best chief executives at the largest NHS acute trusts could command salaries of over £250,000, according to guidance released by NHS Improvement.

The salary ceiling is included in new guidance on pay levels for very senior managers in the NHS. It includes indicative salaries for 10 very senior manager roles in acute, specialist, mental health, ambulance and community trusts. These are grouped according to size of organisation and into lower quartile, median or upper quartiles bands.

The guidance shows a potential 34 per cent difference between the median pay of chief executives in small acute trusts and those at very large trusts.

According to the data, a small acute trust, with a turnover of up to £200m a year, could pay its CEO a median salary of £167,500. A chief at a very large acute trust, with a turnover of £500m or more a year, should pay its chief executive a median salary of £225,000.

NHS Improvement has published the data alongside new guidance setting out rules for how senior managers should be paid. It cautioned that the indicative rates were still under discussion and liable to change.

Jeremy Hunt launched a crackdown on senior executive pay in the NHS two years ago. Each trust was asked to justify why any new very senior manager should be paid more than the prime minister’s £142,500.