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NHiS launches dedicated Commissioning Excellence directorate

Posted in Neurology News,Online First on 28th Apr 2015

NHiS has launched a dedicated Commissioning Excellence directorate in response to the NHS’s need to address increasing patient demand in neurology. 

NHiS, a leading health and social care data information intermediary, has announced the official launch of a new directorate set-up to provide commissioning support services for neurology and associated long-term conditions.

NHiS Commissioning Excellence will be led by Chief Executive, Sue Thomas, and lead Commissioning Advisor, Deborah Matthews. Sue and Deborah are supported by NHiS’s extensive team of clinical advisors, data scientists, researchers and technical support.

“Our analysis indicates that neurology is an area which will need an ever increasing amount of focus by the NHS in forthcoming years. In 2011 the National Audit Office identified that emergency admissions for neurological conditions were increasing at a rate nearly double that for all other conditions in the NHS1. We are aware that this trend is continuing and are keen to deliver commissioning solutions to help improve outcomes for people with neurological conditions, whilst maximising efficiencies for the NHS,” said Nick Merryfield, NHiS Managing Director.

NHiS Commissioning Excellence will provide the highest level of neurological commissioning support through a team of experts with access to unparalleled levels of data-based insight. The directorate will be able to assist commissioners and service providers in building up a data picture of local neurology by mapping and analysing service provision gaps. Newly designed neurology pathways will be delivered via a model of co-production that places patient outcomes at the very centre.

Speaking about the official launch, Sue Thomas, CEO of NHiS Commissioning Excellence said, “People with neurological problems are being let down whilst millions of pounds are being wasted providing health and social care services that aren’t meeting their needs. At NHiS Commissioning Excellence we want to be an integral part of the solution, assisting commissioners and providers to improve services for patients. I am excited at the prospect of coupling our commissioning expertise to the rich mine of NHiS’s health data.”

Traditionally, neurological conditions have been overlooked by the NHS in comparison to other long-term conditions. With neurology now identified as the 7th largest Programme Budget expense2, the NHS’s shift in focus is already being seen in both the inclusion of neurology in Commissioning for Value packs3 and the creation of a neurology data set from the National Intelligence Network.

Commenting on NHiS’s Commissioning Excellence directorate, Steve Ford, Chief Executive of Parkinson’s UK, stated, “Just 15%4 of CCGs have assessed local costs relating to the provision of their neurology services, with only 20%4 assessing the number of people using neurological services. These issues have a significant impact on patient care, with close to 60%4 of patients reporting problems in accessing the services or treatment they need. We are therefore highly supportive of NHiS’s Commissioning Excellence ambition to assist payers and providers in developing services relevant for patients with neurological conditions.”

To find out more about NHiS’s Commissioning Excellence directorate visit, or make contact directly on 0845 121 3686 or


1. National Audit Office (2011), Services for People with Neurological Conditions.

2. Department of Health, Programme Budgeting data 2012/13, February 2014.

3. Public Health England Commissioning for Value (2015), Integrated care pathways check inpatient spend 75+ and complex patients comorbidities.

4. Neurological Alliance (2015), The Invisible Patients.

About NHiS 

Formed in 2007, NHiS is a UK-based organisation owned by Wilmington Plc. The company specialises in managing, analysing and interpreting healthcare data. The business is split across two directorates, Commissioning Excellence and Healthcare Insight. The former works with health and social care organisations to assist in the effective planning and commissioning of patient services. The latter provides business intelligence and insight solutions to commercial healthcare organisations. For more information visit or contact Sue Thomas on 0845 121 3686.

ACNR 2015;15(2).  Online First 28/04/15