• Twenty-three trusts selected for first phase of Lord Carter’s new review into productivity at mental health and community service organisations
  • NHS Improvement letter to mental health and community service trusts reveals providers chosen for initial six month engagement phase
  • Review will follow a similar structure to Lord Carter’s previous investigation into hospital productivity

More than 20 trusts have been chosen to be part of a new NHS efficiency review led by Lord Carter.

The Labour peer and a team from NHS Improvement will look into organisational productivity and performance at mental health and community service organisations.

Lord Carter7

Lord Carter7

Lord Carter’s first efficiency review was published last year

In a letter seen by HSJ, NHSI said the review will follow a similar structure and methodology to Lord Carter’s previous investigation into acute hospital productivity, published last year.

The letter was written by NHSI director of sector development Luke Edwards, and was sent to all mental health and community trust chief executives and chairs last week.

It reveals the 23 mental health and community service providers that will begin six months of detailed engagement in the first phase of the review with Lord Carter and a team from NHSI’s operational productivity directorate.

The 23 trusts are:

  • 2Gether Foundation Trust;
  • 5 Boroughs Partnership FT;
  • Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust;
  • Birmingham Community Healthcare FT;
  • Central and North West London FT;
  • Central London Community Healthcare Trust;
  • Derbyshire Community Health Services FT;
  • East London FT;
  • Hertfordshire Community Trust;
  • Hertfordshire Partnership University FT;
  • Kent Community Health FT;
  • Lancashire Care FT;
  • Leeds Community Healthcare Trust;
  • Leicestershire Partnership FT;
  • Lincolnshire Partnership FT;
  • Norfolk Community Health and Care Trust;
  • Northumberland, Tyne and Wear FT;
  • Nottinghamshire Healthcare FT;
  • Oxford Health FT;
  • South West London and St George’s Mental Health Trust;
  • Sussex Partnership FT;
  • Torbay and South Devon FT; and
  • Wirral Community FT.

The engagement phase will focus on developing an understanding of:

  • how mental health and community trusts operate;
  • what “good” looks like;
  • what approaches to improving productivity and efficiency are already in place and opportunities to drive these further; and
  • what metrics and indicators are required to support the development of the model for these sectors.

Mr Edwards wrote that Lord Carter will oversee the new review in his role as a non-executive director of NHS Improvement.

He added: “As you may be aware, as Lord Carter was compiling and finalising his report into operational productivity and performance in NHS acute hospitals, he was contacted by many community and mental health trusts who expressed their willingness to be involved in a similar detailed approach.

“I am pleased to say that we have now commenced the review into community and mental health trusts, building on the approach of the original report.

“His intention is to follow a similar structure and methodology of the acute review, with some significant tailoring to community and mental health.”

The findings of the engagement phase are expected to be published before the end of 2017, following a consultation with the organisations involved.

Mr Edwards said the team will develop a “benchmarking criteria for an ‘optimal model’ NHS community or mental health care trust”.

He added: “As we develop our understanding, we will feed these into discussions with trusts.

“This will enable us to jointly scope, iterate and finalise the findings of the review and specify the benchmarking criteria for an ‘optimal model’ NHS community or mental health care trust.

“Some of this will take place by linking the community and mental health trusts to the ongoing implementation of the acute review, but of course there will be many areas where we will need to jointly produce recommendations and solutions that are tailored to the varied work you undertake.”

HSJ understands NHS Improvement plans to extend Lord Carter’s review to all remaining providers including ambulance and specialist acute trusts, and an update will be sent later this year.