In County Durham we spend approximately £1bn each year on Health and Social Care. We have a strong history already of working together and a track record of delivering. 

Commissioning is the process by which health and care services are planned, purchased and monitored and the process is often repeated and thought of as a cycle, recommissioning and adjusting services as we go.

We took an important step forward in our plans to join up the way health and social care services are commissioned in County Durham with the introduction of an Integrated Strategic Commissioning function. The team has came together from 3 different organisations: 

  • Durham County Council 
  • County Durham Integrated Care Board 
  • North of England Commissioning Support 

By commissioning services together between Durham County Council and the NHS it allows us to look at the holistic needs of patients or services. We can have a coordinated view across the system and services can be joined up and responsive, reducing duplication which can free up resources to invest in services and make things even better.

Some issues in health and social care can only be resolved by working at a regional level, such as population based prevention initiatives or developing provision for very complex health or care services.  These services are past planned and delivered across a wider geography.

But in a place as large as County Durham we often have to tailor services within our county to work for our local communities as it is so diverse.  The partners in The County Durham Care Partnership recognise that too and know how to work across larger, regional geographies but also how to be part of very local teams. 

With the integrated team, we can build on what we have in place already to better shape services across the county and improve outcomes for the population