On the day briefing: NHS operational planning and contracting guidance 2020/21
NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE/I) published the operational planning and contracting guidance for 2020/21 on 30 January. This overarching document sets the delivery task for both NHS providers and commissioners for the coming financial year, covering system planning, finances, operational performance, and workforce. It details what the service will be expected to deliver in the second year of the long term plan period, including moving towards financial balance and improving access to services.
Key points include:
The planning guidance sets out the shared goals for the health service for 2020/21, the second year of the long term plan period.
Systems are required to improve urgent and emergency care performance from the 2019/20 baseline. They should cut acute bed occupancy to 92% by expanding bed capacity and providing more community care. Elective care waiting lists should be reduced, while 52 week waits for planned care should be eliminated.
Financial recovery fund payments will be paid in-quarter to aid cashflow for providers. Half of all payments will depend on systemwide financial performance. Payments will also be tapered, meaning that some money will be available to trusts which fall short of achieving their financial improvement trajectory target.