Recommendation 129

Commissioning focus on standards

In selecting indicators and means of measuring compliance, the principal focus of commissioners should be on what is reasonably necessary to safeguard patients and to ensure that at least fundamental safety and quality standards are maintained. This requires close engagement with patients, past, present and potential, to ensure that their expectations and concerns are addressed.

NHS England will support and assure clinical commissioning groups to develop indicators and measures of compliance with appropriate patient involvement. These will include, and build on, the fundamental standards of care that providers of care will be required to meet.

NHS England and clinical commissioning groups are developing a framework for commissioning for quality which will set out the steps that commissioners should take to assure themselves and their patients that the services that they are commissioning are safe, clinically effective, and result in a positive experience for patients.


NHS England has continued to develop relevant guidance and tools for clinical commissioning groups, to support them in monitoring the quality of service provision and supporting continuous improvement in quality. A framework for commissioning for quality, Commissioning for Quality – Views from Commissioners was published in July 2014.