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Launch of new voluntary CCG governance code

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A clinical commissioning group(CCG) governance code has been launched by the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA) to complement official guidance from NHS England.

The voluntary code takes the form of six principles. These aim to outline governance principles to support clinicians, and those that work with them, when making commissioning decisions in order that reflect the needs of the patients and the community.

The code was developed by an expert panel with representatives from the nursing community and representatives from each of the different groups that should make up a CCG board. There was a public consultation to ensure that the principles represented the public's needs.

Louise Thomson, head of policy at ICSA, said that it was important to ensure that the code reflected all of the different members of a CCG board. 'We were keen to establish that CCGs aren't just GP-led so we tried to be as inclusive as possible. Each governing body should have a nurse member so it is important that this code represents the nursing members too.'

The six principles that make up the CCG code are that members must: understand and support each other's roles; act collaboratively to deliver better health outcomes; build and maintain relationships within the CCG and other commissioning organisations to contribute to debates on patient safety; accept collective accountability to its membership; ensure that the views of interested parties are used to inform decisions; and, have robust and effective processes for decision-making that maintain transparency at every level.

ICSA will monitor the uptake and execution of the code for the next year and revise the code accordingly.

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