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Effective Commissioning in Health and Social Care

It is essential that in today's public sector, social care and health managers have a thorough and critical understanding of best practice in commissioning services. This guide has been developed to underpin core aspects of commissioning services in health and social care with tools and strategies that really work. The authors go through the commissioning process step-by-step in order to help the reader better understand the following:

·  The distinguishing characteristics of commissioning ;

·  how commissioning is affected by changes in the public sector generally and health and social care in particular;    

·  the significant potential for improved service quality and value for money arising from commissioning; 

·  how good commissioning can engage in productive conversations that can lead to better outcomes for patients, clients and the community.

There are sections on specific skills needed for good commissioning, the challenges many face and how to approach them, and what makes a good commissioning manager.

Introduction to commissioning
What is commissioning?

Key roles

Benefits from commissioning

Commissioning compared with other management processes

Where does commissioning come from?

Successful commissioning - collaboration

The commissioning process - a model

Commissioning - a new model

What skills are needed?

Commissioning in the NHS
The development of commissioning in the NHS

The new health environment

The journey to authorisation

The challenges of commissioning in this sector

Commissioning in adult social care
The development of commissioning in adult social care

Government actions

A developing view of adult social care

The role of local authorities

The challenges of commissioning in this sector

Key challenges for health and social care
Comparison between the NHS and social care systems

The specific challenges facing the NHS and social care

What questions do we need to answer?


A little too detailed for my cohort. A very academic look at commissioning. would be an excellent HE resource.

Miss Ebony Clement
Health, Childcare and services, New College Bradford
October 19, 2023

This really is an excellent text and pretty much alone in its field right now. It is very topical in public health where many services are being put out to tender and health and social care workers are needing to get up to speed quickly. A highly readable book, well organised and logically presented. I have learnt so much from reading it myself, I know my students will love it!

Dr Helen Hand
Faculty of Health and Wellbeing, Sheffield Hallam Univ.
July 22, 2014

This a nice concise book with an easy reading layout.

Perhaps a little expensive for the amount of content and not considered of good value for the modules and course I am lecturing on.

Mrs Maxine Davis
Children Health AccessPublic Services, South Devon College
July 8, 2014

Extremely informative and engaging text that goes some way to defining best practise when embarking on the pathway of commissioning. Ideal for any clinical institution that is considering offering a service through the NHS.

Mr Philip Bright
Research Department, European School of Osteopathy
April 30, 2014